Phantogram Turn Up Oakland’s Fox Theater

 

Photos by Kola Shobo
Words by Brandon Diaz

Hot off the presses with their second full-length release entitled Voices, the Upstate New York duo brought that boom to a sold out room.

The night kicked off with a mild dose of dream pop by opener White Sea. Fronted by the sultry M83 vocalist, Morgan Kibby, their 80’s-esque tunes wafted through the theater as the cool kids piled in quickly, eager to be close for the headliners. The trio played a near seamless set of agreeable tunes, including “Mountaineer,” just mellow enough to classify as chill, but gallant enough to command attention through bold falsettos, and confident drumming.

But even with garnering fair attention from an audience eager for the main event, the showstopper of White Sea’s set wasn’t their nocturnal, yet dancy “Cannibal Love,” but rather Kibby’s gold Wonder Woman belt and midnight purple pants-gown that drew eyes to the stage.

…and then there was that one group.

With her donning a cropped black and white leather jacket and him sporting crisp white button up and classic Fender guitar, Sarah Barthel, and Josh Carter, better known as Phantogram, brought their unparalleled sound machine to a very excitable Oakland crowd.

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Mayer Hawthorne Brings the Soul Brigade to Oakland + Photos

 

Photos by Kola Shobo
Words by Brandon Diaz

As if Oakland needed any more soul, they sure got it from Mayer Hawthorne‘s stellar performance at the Fox Theater in Oakland’s Uptown district.

The evening began with a brief but lively performance from curly-haired songstress, Gavin Turek, who strode about the stage with Tina Turner flair in a stunning lavender dress. As the theater filled, Danish soul duo Quadron stole swoons from the packed house as vocalist Coco O. took center stage with a stunning sequined ensemble and ruby red lips.

Their 45-minute set was filled with lively songs from 2013’s Avalanche, all ears clinging to Coco’s angelic voice, eyes affixed to her striking pant-suit dress and tasteful fingerwaves. Sans producer Robin Hannibal (technically one-half of the band), Quadron held attention as they ran through a set that included “LFT,” “Sea Salt,” and a breathtaking cover of Lauryn Hill’s “Ex-Factor.”

And as that sweet perfume of soul music washed the crowd, Quadron finished, allowing Mayer Hawthorne and his backing four-piece band to bring the funk.
Emerging from a glowing broken heart at center stage, the Detroit-area native brought a convivial night of neo-Motown to the Fox. Sporting a royal blue two-button suit and a pair of Nike Air-Max sneakers, Hawthorne lead his band through a nonstop set of grooves that kept hands in the air with continuous jams from his sing-a-long songbook.

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