Barefoot performers of Grammy-nominated band Greta Van Fleet, wow AT&T Center

Riley Carroll, Arts & Life Editor

Thousands in the AT&T Center waited in eager anticipation as the Grammy-nominated rock band Greta Van Fleet’s stage was completely concealed by immense black sheets with golden screen-printed sigils. Brothers Josh, Jake and Sam Kiszka, paired with Daniel “Danny” Wagner, performed their whole set barefoot to feel the rhythm through the stage’s vibrations. At the beginning of their set, Wagner, the drummer, and Sam, the bassist, were visible only by their silhouettes, thanks to backlighting that cast their figures onto the sheet. The drawn-out opening of their unbelievable set transitioned into “Built By Nations” as the large sheets dropped and revealed the band.

Preceding Greta Van Fleet’s nearly two-hour set were Crown Lands and Durand Jones & The Indications, both of which gained more interest from the crowd than typical openers. The two-piece behind Crown Lands, drummer Cody Bowles and guitarist, bassist and keyboardist Kevin Comeau, specifically caught the attention of many due to their vocal and instrumental similarity reminiscent of both Greta Van Fleet and Led Zeppelin. For the majority of the set, Comeau was seen religiously flipping his hair, and he even knocked his head on his microphone in doing so.

When it came to the R&B and soul group Durand Jones & The Indications, the music was much more laid-back, as one would expect. However, what really set them apart was the vocals from drummer Aaron Frazer and lead singer Durand Jones. Both pitch-perfect vocalists astonished the crowd with their insane range and vocal control.

Though both openers were fantastic in their own way, the energy of the stadium ignited during the introduction to the main act. Not only did the lead singer, Josh, sound exactly like he does in the studio recordings, but he also flawlessly balanced the quality of his performance with fan interactions. For example, in the middle of Wagner’s drum solo, Josh climbed upon a security guard’s shoulders and passed out white roses to fans near the barricade — even playfully yelling back at the enthusiastic pit members screaming for him.

At a point between songs, the band members adorned in glittering garments were reading signs from fans in the general admission pit. Multiple attendees asked Wagner and Sam to take a shot with them, and the band members agreed — twice. 

While the flock of Greta Van Fleet fans may have suspected an encore was imminent, the group surprisingly concluded with four additional songs, including the rarely-played “Highway Tune,” enhanced by a boatload of pyrotechnics, smoke machines and headache-inducing strobe lighting that had many attendees shielding their eyes. Unlike their time-restricted set at Austin City Limits (ACL) back in 2021, the band took advantage of the reserved arena and turned many of their less-than-5-minute songs into 15-minute pieces with instrumental breaks woven between. 

The cherry on top of their killer set was their iconic 70s outfits. Josh made two separate alterations to his white and gold fitted jumpsuit with a neckline that plunged low to his mid-torso. At separate points during the show, he took the sheer sleeves off of his jumpsuit, paraded around sleeveless for a moment and replaced them with a flashy golden robe. Sam and Jake were clothed in coordinating black and gold suits — shirtless underneath. Danny’s attire included a muted gold sleeveless shirt with a sparkling neckline and matching pants. The black and gold theme sensibly reflected the color scheme of the album art for “The Battle at Garden’s Gate,” the band’s most recent album.

It is safe to say that my second time experiencing Greta Van Fleet in person was much better than the last. The band seemed so much more at home in the AT&T Center than they did on the ACL stage in October 2021, and my ears have been ringing for far longer than they did last fall.

To listen to Greta Van Fleet’s Nov. 5 setlist in chronological order, visit the “GVF 11.5.22” playlist on Spotify.