Walk the Moon balances electrifying House of Blues set with new, old songs alike

David Preda, Senior Staff Reporter

As part of its Talking is Hard Tour, Cincinnati-based synth-rock quartet Walk the Moon performed Wednesday to a sold-out crowd at the House of Blues. With a rainbow array of lights combined with the band’s phenomenal stage presence and raucous melodies, the energy in the room was nearly palpable with excitement.

Setting the tone for Walk the Moon was The Griswolds, a pop-rock group from Sydney. Infectious guitar riffs and synthesized hooks foreshadowed the latter band’s performance, while lead singer Chris Whitehall’s geometrically patterned black-and-white tights exemplified the fashion of the night.

Ending the intermission between itself and the opener, Walk the Moon, with faces painted, arrived on stage to prismatic lights and a recording of “The Circle of Life” that flowed directly into the band’s anthem of acceptance “Different Colors.” Once in action, the band became a force to be reckoned with, guitarist Eli Maiman and bassist Kevin Ray dancing across stage and standing on the gates of the pit. The band displayed an intimate and reciprocal relationship with the crowd, who listened to every one of frontman Nicholas Petricca’s urges to dance.

Though the tour is promoting Walk the Moon’s sophomore album “Talking is Hard,” the set included favorites from its first self-titled release such as “Tightrope,” “I Can Lift a Car” and “Shiver Shiver.” Slowing down to bring a trombone soloist to stage for “Aquaman,” the band managed to keep the audience’s rapt attention through their hour and a half set that ended with an encore of a cover of The Killer’s “All These Things That I’ve Done” and Walk the Moon’s first hit “Anna Sun,” a now predictable but not unwarranted choice for the band.

Despite Walk the Moon’s proclamation that “Talking is Hard,” performances like this one prove that, for the band, performing comes easily.

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