Saint Motel proves they’re just New Orleans’ type in Tipitina’s performance


Colin Yaccarino | Photography Editor

Saint Motel rocked Tipitina’s with a low-key but energetic show. The band released their most recent album, saintmotelevision in 2016.

On Monday, Nov. 6, indie-pop-rock band Saint Motel took an ecstatic audience back to the ’90s. In a performance bursting with youthful optimism and feel-good vibes, the Los Angeles four-piece brought charisma and passion to Tipitina’s stage.

Saint Motel’s performance was preceded first by quirky, bouncy electro-pop artist Gibbz and then by an extensive compilation of nostalgia-inducing ’80s and ’90s commercials. Projected onto the screen above the stage, intended to look like a retro ’80s-era TV, these bittersweet ads induced flashbacks in every audience member over 20.

Commercials included low-res ads for outdated cereals, iconic jingles, gloriously over-the-top Japanese advertising and a montage of Grey Poupon ads — all of which combined to form a light and humorous introduction for Saint Motel.

The band came onstage to a thoroughly hyped audience, and the energy level remained sky-high throughout the performance. Kicking off their set with classics “Puzzle Pieces” and “Benny Goodman,” Saint Motel — fronted by slick, charismatic lead singer A/J Jackson — delivered a show that captivated every audience member from start to finish.

What Saint Motel lacked in mainstream presence and quantity of radio hits, it made up for twofold in its optimistic, infectiously jubilant stage presence. Even though a sizable portion of the concertgoers likely knew only Saint Motel’s two or three bigger hits, the impressive quality of the band’s setlist ensured there were no lulls in the hype whatsoever.

Though the band started out strong, Saint Motel’s last few songs were the true showrunners. The irresistibly danceable “Move” and soulfully spiritual “Born Again” almost stole the show prematurely, and radio-friendly bop, “Cold Cold Man,” had the entire audience singing along contentedly. It was, of course, the band’s biggest hit that really got the people going.

For “My Type,” Saint Motel’s closing song, Jackson finally made his way into the rabidly ecstatic crowd. Proceeding to circle the entire venue, balconies included, he sang and danced with individual audience members, happily proclaiming they were “just my type.” Accompanied by the song’s sultry saxophone hook, Jackson’s enthusiasm permeated Tipitina’s with a tangible magnetism.

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