Out of nothing comes the moonglow

A recap of Beach House’s first trip to San Antonio

Cesar Soto, Contributing Writer

After years of producing the most critically acclaimed dream-pop music in the industry, American musical duo, Beach House, finally paid their first visit to San Antonio on Sept. 22, as part of their “Once Twice Melody Tour.” They brought a glowing, radiant concert experience to all the fans present at Tech Port Arena.

Beach House provided a dream-like experience by opening the night with “Once Twice Melody,” the title track of their latest album that was released earlier this year. Band members Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally appeared as silhouetted figures against the pink lights that cast over their shadows, perfectly setting up the show’s production design. 

This visual aesthetic tapped into a fascinating component of their show- which was their stage setup itself being surprisingly minimal. It featured only Legrand, Scally and touring drummer James Barone on stage with their instruments and a large LED screen behind them projecting visuals throughout the night. Over the rest of the night, their stage setup would demonstrate just how important lighting is in creating a live experience, utilizing it in ways that few other bands do now.

As they progressed through the deeper parts of their discography with songs such as  “Silver Soul” and “Dark Spring,” the best part of seeing each song play out was watching the sounds and visual build up all the way to the end when the song would audibly unleash. At this point, the visuals and music would completely consume the audience. 

Highlights of the set included the song “PPP,” with its outro being the most captivating of the night thanks to its instrumentation, the gentle pink and green lighting and Legrand’s powerfully soothing vocals combining to create a stunning experience for the senses. Their performance of “Superstar,” off their newest record, provided a split-screen effect on the screen behind them, featuring closeups of their keyboard playing, drumming and vocals by Legrand that felt even more powerful as it was the closest view the crowd had of the duo all night. 

Towards the latter half of the show, “Lemon Glow” was a fan favorite that did not disappoint. It featured their best instrumentation of the night, with their keyboards and guitars having many changes in tone and pitch throughout, along with Legrand headbanging her way through the finale. 

Of course, no discussion of Beach House is complete without mention of their most iconic track, “Space Song.” As the notes began to ring around the venue, every cell phone shot straight up in the air to record one of the night’s best-performed songs. Though it is extremely well-known, they managed to make it feel new to the audience. Legrand sang the song with much more intensity than on the studio recording, drawing in cheers and giving eager fans exactly what they wanted to hear.

After thanking the audience, the crew and everyone that helped make the night possible, Beach House ended their set by performing “Myth,” a song that left the crowd feeling a range of emotions before launching into an encore of “Over and Over.” It was not the grandest way to end the show, but the smooth changes in color and their song playing gave it such a great emotional note to close the night and end the dream-like spell they had the crowd in for the last hour and 40 minutes.

With the heavy reliance on digital visuals, it was not a complete surprise that the Baltimore-based duo ran into a few technical difficulties throughout the show. However, Legrand used her charm to check in with the crowd and to let them know that as a “chaos baby” herself, things like this do not bother her. The duo even joked that God must have known it was their first time here as they have never had as many technical issues in one night before, wanting them to work to make it special. Regardless, it was clear that Beach House wanted to make their first experience in San Antonio as memorable as possible, and it is safe to say that in so many ways, they did exactly that.