L.S. Dunes brought their headline tour to Fort Collins, Colorado for a packed show at Washington’s. With support from Pinkshift, the night was one to remember as fans—some even strangers to each other—danced, moshed, and crowdsurfed with one another without abandon.
The evening began with a set from Baltimore-based pop-punk band Pinkshift. Teeming with life, singer Ashrita Kumar bounced across stage, hyping the crowd up in the process. The band immediately broke into “I’m Not Crying, You’re Crying,” coming out swinging with this fan favorite song. Kumar’s vocal performance shined with a vulnerability, raw and uninhibited.
Between songs, Kumar chatted with the audience, asking if anyone had ever experienced a certain type of queer love and heartbreak. The crowd cheered as an affirmative response. Dedicating the next song, “Love Me Forever,” to those who cheered, the band launched into the song with their infectious fervor.
Other highlights of the set included the band’s performance of “I’m going to tell my therapist on you” and “Rainwalk,” the latter of which brought Pinkshift’s highly energetic set to a close. Drummer Myron Houngbedji shined during the bridge as they masterfully navigating the quick tempo with intricate fills that Houngbedji made look easy. It’s safe to say that those who had not heard of the foursome before the show left the venue as fans. Pinkshift’s merch line which wrapped around the length of the lobby is a testament to that fact.
Finally, it was time for everyone’s favorite band to take the stage. Drummer Tucker Rule made his entrance on stage by climbing behind his set, blasting into the intro of “Bombsquad” as the remaining members joined him on stage. Hearing Rule’s bombastic playing sent the audience into an almost euphoric anticipation that erupted as singer Anthony Green sang the first lines of the song: “Dissolve the fascination. I know the sins reflect in my imagination.” Green’s energy rivaled that of the crowd as he jumped up and down in time to the chorus, shaking the stage in the process.
From there, the band was off and racing through the rest of their set—and discography. A highlight of their performance saw L.S. Dunes play their newest single, “Benadryl Subreddit,” which was originally called “Horse Meat,” the band told fans during the Q&A. About halfway through the song, Green tossed his microphone into the pit and let fans take over vocal duties. Fans screeched along to the chorus as Green smiled on like a proud father. The sentimentally didn’t last for too long as someone ended up chucking the mic back on stage.
Between songs, Green made conversation with the audience as he tried to help reunite a fan with their missing phone—an endeavor he miraculously succeeded in doing. Before continuing, he let everyone in on a little wisdom as he said, “You’ve got to have the lows to have the highest of highs.” A sentiment that seemed to ring true throughout the venue as fans moshed and danced with one another, giant smiles spread across their faces.
Blasting into the band’s first release, “Permanent Rebellion,” Green chided the audience, saying “You don’t want to get bugged out at work tomorrow because you didn’t go all freaky tonight!” Before he could get the words out of his mouth, the middle of the pit became a giant pit, taking up much of the ground level of the venue. Green certainly knows how to get the most out of the audience, feeding off their energy for his own performance, creating a cycle of infectious joy.
The highlight of the show, however, occurred during the band’s final song “Sleep Cult.” Quite poignantly, a giant “friend circle” opened up in the pit, as friends and strangers alike joined hands and swayed in time to the music together. Cathartic to a tee, the fans screamed along, “I’m sorry that I wish that I was dead,” as pairs began to slow dance inside the circle. This heartwarming moment was the perfect end to a set from a band that started because of a shared love of music between friends. With that, the show came to an end. The only critique of Dunes’ set is that it ends so quickly, but you know what they say, “Time flies when you’re having fun.”
Do yourself a favor and catch L.S. Dunes on their upcoming tour as they open up for Pierce the Veil this winter during their U.S. tour.