Just a year ago, few had heard of Seattle band The Head and the Heart, who made a name for themselves in their rain-soaked hometown with their unique harmonizations and powerful live shows. Fast forward a year, and my have things changed. Since signing to Seattle's Sub Pop Records, the six-piece have exploded onto the indie music scene, performing at festivals across the globe, (including last year's Austin City Limits Festival), and even crossed a task off of every musicians' bucket list when they taped an episode of the television show of the same name last year.
But none of that mattered when the band took the stage at Stubb's Sunday night, for their second sold-out show of the weekend. "I don't think any of you guys realize how amazing this is to us - selling out two Stubb's shows! This city rocks," gushed Violinist Charity Thielen, who also handles background vocals. And amazing, it was. For as polished and cohesive as The Head and the Heart sound on their self-titled debut album, their live act is a thing of beauty – a stripped-down event that showcases their music perfectly.
They took to the stage with "Cats and Dogs," flowing as seamlessly into "Couer D' Alene" as it does on the album. They continued through tracks from their debut, before offering up some new material, before which vocalist Jonathan Russell joked "this is the last day of our tour - it's like a Friday night for us. Too bad it feels like its 130 degrees outside." Before kicking into "Lost in my Mind," the hit that inarguably put them on the map, Russell was chatty once more - revealing that he wrote that song about his brother in Virginia, his home state before relocating to the Pacific Northwest.
A lovely acoustic track, the Civil Wars-esque "Ever Since (Chasing a Ghost)" began their encore, to a mostly quiet crowd eager to hear this b-side from their iTunes session. And in typical fashion, the show closed out with "Rivers and Roads," which, bolstered by Thielen's commanding vocals, could be considered a master class in harmonization.
While the night was hot, and the crowd was a little distracting, their second sold-out show proved that The Head and the Heart pack a hefty punch of staying power.
You can check out more photos from the show here, along with the full video and photos from their appearance in the KGSR Music Lounge.