Tennis and Pure Bathing Culture at the Crescent Ballroom


Tennis and Pure Bathing Culture at the Crescent Ballroom 10/29

by Alexandra Watts


In the past month I have listened to (and reviewed) Tennis’ new album Ritual in Repeat multiple times, been able to interview the band for The Blaze 1330 A.M. (and this website), and experienced their show at Crescent Ballroom on October 29th with Pure Bathing Culture.

Crescent Ballroom is located in Downtown Phoenix, and the intimacy of the venue paired with the great shows they put on has secured it as one of the places in this city that is dear to my heart. They also have really good food and a prime staff, and because a lot of my favorite acts come to play here, it’s good to know the venue is 10/10.

The show kicked off with opening act Pure Bathing Culture, who hail from Brooklyn. I definitely recommend you listen to. They had a lo-fi sound, killer instrumentals, and overall, a solid set.

Side note, but my guest at the show really likes Pure Bathing Culture and for the first time in her life was quiet during a show due to sheer mesmerization.

Tennis came on shortly after (for assorted chuckles and giggles, check out this tweet), and I don’t know if I am capable of putting into words what it feels like to be so close to such a good band with good vibes. Forgive me if I lapse into sounding like a hippie archetype, but such rhetoric happens to spill out every single time I go to a show.

The band played a good amount of tracks off of their new album. If you were level in 1 in being familiar with the band, upon listening to the release, you would be happy to know that the band sounds just as good live as they do via recording. Subsequently, if you have listened to the album a few too many times to count, you would not only be happy to hear the songs live, but witness just how much passion the band feels when performing.

Tennis is one of those bands that feels the music. From the moment they appeared on stage, Patrick Riley and Alaina Moore exchanges in relation to the music was something that I observed that only supplemented the performance. Being close to the stage and able to witness the interactions between the band members themselves and every single note that filled the venue only made me love the band more.

Such commitment to the music did not leave the band faltering on audience interaction. Between songs when the audience was quiet (note: we were in awe), Moore joked that this wasn’t a library.

While Ritual in Repeat songs were played in the set, classics came up (shout-out to Origins), too, especially at “the end” of the show.

“The end” is in quotes because at a concert when a band says “goodbye,” it actually means that they’ll be back in less than three minutes for an encore. My guest did not know this and wanted to get out to her car early.

The encore was a stripped-down version of songs under dimmer lights (OR UNDER A DIMMING LIGHT, HA. TENNIS SONG PUN. IF YOU GOT THE  PUN, WE ARE NOW BEST FRIENDS) and it was beautifully done. If my friend had made it through the crowd, we might have missed such a wonderful moment, and she probably wouldn’t be my friend anymore.

All in all, I knew it was going to be magnificent, and am happy to report that it was all I wanted and more.

It’s super cool to have a favorite band, super cool when they release a new album super cool when the album is super cool, super cool when they tour, super cool when they put on a super cool show, and super cool when you never want to leave the show.

Thank you to Pure Bathing Culture for being not only a great opening act, but setting the mood of a good show. Even though all of the band members dressed better than I do, and play instruments better than I ever will, I thoroughly recommend you check out their stuff!

Thank you to the random concert friends I happened to meet and for letting me witness their intelligent discourse on feminism, music, clothes, writing, and life after high school.

Thank you for my guest for maintaining the good vibes in friendship and a newfound concert buddy relationship. Also, thanks for not making it out of the venue before Tennis’ encore.

Thank you to Moore’s health for letting her perform in Phoenix (note – there were a few shows that had to be cancelled as Moore was on vocal rest. The shows have been rescheduled, so Tennis for everyone!)

And of course, thank you to Tennis for being a band that has supplemented my years in high school, made frequent “appearances” during my late night dance parties and playlists playlists, and as of late October, contributed to one of the best concert experiences I’ve ever had.