Phantogram Got the Marquee Groovin’


Phantogram Got the Marquee Groovin’

by Kaitlin Kollasch


The Marquee Theatre begins to fill with people, young and old. It is Phantogram’s second stop on their fall tour just after their new album, Three, was released on September 16. This electronic, trippy pop duo has been on the rise since their start in 2007, but their latest album is known to be more heavy than any of their previous because of all the things the band members had been through these last two years. They decided to use their misfortunes to make deep music and go back on tour.

The crowd spilled out into the lobby area due to its growing size as minutes passed waiting for the band to come on. This venue may have been too small to accommodate all the devoted Phantogram fans, but they were ready and waiting for a good time. The stage has a sheer sheet in front of it draping from the ceiling but is transparent enough to still see the platform. As band members Sarah Barthel and Josh Carter take the stage, projections start to show up on the screen. Different patterns and shapes race across, inviting your eyes to follow.

As the first note rang out, the crowd screamed with excitement. All hands were in the air, and people danced to the rhythm. You can’t help but move your body to the enchanting guitar and powerful singing of “Funeral Pyre.” On the sheet there are silhouettes being projected of Barthel and Carter. It’s a cool visual effect to add to the show, making it more interesting with every new projection. The first song finished and the crowd hollered for more. Their call was answered quickly as another song began with more trippy and danceable beats.

Each song has unique style, but still flows with the electro-chill vibe. The rhythm is bumping with psychedelic guitar and electric beats to back it up, so dancing to this type of music is more relaxed and groovy. Barthel’s singing reminds me of Romy Madley Croft of The XX, very airy and interesting. When the crowd hears the beginning of “You’re Mine,” they go wild. Barthel belts out the first line, and the sheet in front of the stage drops. This is the first time we have seen the band clearly, so the crowd screams even louder.

The band plays more songs of the same nature then suddenly the theatre goes dark. Flames begin to show on the background screen, and Barthel stands in the center of the stage wearing a long black cloak. The song begins and smoke rolls from the back of Barthel. A darker and dramatic mood is definitely felt from this song. The crowd seems a little confused since all the other songs were more upbeat, but the effects make it interesting. When it’s over, Carter announces that one was called “Destroyer”. You could tell this was the heaviness the band talked about from their new album. The band exits the stage, and the crowd shouts anxiously for the encore. Everyone knows the best is saved for last.

Barthel and Carter cruise back on stage to let us know there’s more in store. They play their most well-known songs like “Fall in Love” and end with the crowd favorite, “You Don’t Get Me High Anymore.” If you haven’t experienced Phantogram in person, I would say you’re missing out. This duo was even better live than their recorded songs. The atmosphere was so groovy and chill that everyone easily vibed with the band. It was definitely a great start for Phantogram on their fall tour.


Reach the writer: @k_kollasch1