BØRNS Looked Angelic Last Night at the Comerica Theatre

Photo by Chad Elder

Photo by Chad Elder

BØRNS Looked Angelic Last Night at the Comerica Theatre

by multiple authors


Combine the rays of soft yellow light shining down and spotlighting with the mane of Jesus hair and BØRNS looked like an angel sent directly from heaven to the stage of Phoenix’s Comerica Theatre.

Garrett Borns’s gentle presence and soft speaking voice furthered the impression, but the Michigan native captivated the almost-sold-out venue with flawless transitions between mysterious, breathy vocals and powerful falsetto, the latter prompting roars of excitement from the crowd.

Opening with “Seeing Stars,” he established familiarity and dove right into “10,000 Emerald Pools,” absorbed as he was in his music. This was a trend—during his set, BØRNS didn’t have much to say, but rather flowed smoothly through songs from last October’s Dopamine and 2014’s Candy EP.

BØRNS’ sparkly, melodic pop is dance-able yet peaceful, much like the ukulele music that comprises his roots. Last night, it made for a crowd with incredibly diverse moods, from the euphoria of the pit to the entrancement of the main concourse.

Crowd favorites were, predictably, “Pools,” which has recently received generous airplay on alternative stations, and closer “Electric Love,” the track that first put BØRNS on the mainstream’s map. For these last moments of the set, the crowd was illuminated by screen light as everyone pulled out a phone to video the magic.

We hung on every word, hypnotized by the heart-melting figure on stage surrounded by a halo of light, suspended in the atmosphere he created. —Taylor Gilliam


Garrett Borns, 24, was born and raised in Grand Haven, Michigan. From a young age he was fascinated with the arts, even including magic. By the time he was 13 he received the National Scholastic Art Award with a college scholarship to the Kendall College of Art and Design in Grand Rapids. In 2013, while living in New York City, Garrett took a trip to the West Coast and found that his heart and muse were in Los Angeles.

A few months after making L.A. his permanent home, he started calling himself BØRNS and wrote his first single, “10,000 Emerald Pools,” with Jack Kennedy. On November 10, 2014, the single was released alongside his debut EP, Candy, and BØRNS went public. After several television appearances on shows like Conan, Late Night with Seth Meyers, The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, and The Late Late Show with James Corden, he began his rise to fame.

His first full album, Dopamine, was released on October 16, 2015 with singles including “Electric Love” and “Holy Ghost”. As he gained national attention he began touring around the country, opening for other bands, and even headlining at festivals.

This Wednesday, April 13, 2016 my friend and I saw BØRNS perform at Comerica Theater with Yacht and M83. Often criticized for sounding “womanly” on the radio this Harry Styles look-a-like did not disappoint. The whole time he was preforming I tried (and failed) to reach all those same high notes that he sings with such ease. From listening to his Spotify occasionally to hearing his angelic, alto vocals live, I became a true fan.

After the show my friend made me wait outside for the bands to hop on their tour busses so we could say a quick hello. Although I was tired and felt bad for the performers who had to be more tired than I was, we stuck it out and finally saw Garrett Borns walk in our direction. Girls all around screamed his name and all I could say was “hey, nice shoes!” because they were indeed very cool blue shoes.

BØRNS will be preforming at Coachella this weekend and then returning to Arizona at the end of the month. Keep an eye out for other upcoming tour dates and always keep and ear open for his songs on the radio. It won’t be long until you too will be trying your best to stay on pitch with his vocals. —Katie Maher



ICYMI: BØRNS will be playing Alt AZ 93.3’s Festiv-Alt Saturday, April 23rd, in downtown Phoenix.