Seattle indie-folk band The Head and the Heart, played a sold out set at Stubb’s on Friday, as part of their national tour for their new album “Signs of Light.” The six-member band filled the audience with energy and joy, creating a sublime experience for the group’s Austin fan base.
Story by Hayli Rudolph
Photos by Claire Schaper
The Head and the Heart took the stage a little after 9:30 p.m., kicking off the evening with a radio favorite, “All We Ever Knew.” The stage was decorated with several small palm trees on both sides. White lights hung from the ceiling and a neon sign that read “Signs of Light” beamed behind the drummer.
After getting the evening started, the band settled into a steady mix of newer and older songs. One of the lead singers, Jonathan Russell, asked the audience to pull out their flashlights for “Let’s Be Still,” making Stubb’s radiate with twinkles from iPhone light beams.
In one of the most noteworthy moments of the night, the band brought out their opening act, Declan Mckenna and his band, to help sing “Lost in My Mind.” The audience was an endless wave of motion, jumping, dancing and singing, matching the energy of the band members on stage.
Every every new tune of the night brought new colors to the stage background as well as the “Signs of Light” sign. The crowd and the band fed off of each other’s energy, especially that of singer and violinist Charity Rose Thielen, who was often caught skipping and dancing across the stage. Matt Gervias, the stand-in vocalist and guitarist for regular Head and the Heart member Josiah Johnson, was incredibly interactive with the crowd. Throughout the show, Gervais jumped into the pit to shake hands, give out a few hugs, and for one lucky woman, a kiss.
The band’s last song of the night was “Down in the Valley.” Cheers and clapping from the crowd amplified during Thielen’s soulful violin solo. As the band waved their goodbyes, the audience wasted no time before chanting “encore.” Five minutes later, Russell returned to the stage to sing “Library Magic,” soon followed the rest of the band. The next song, “Cats and Dogs,” faded seamlessly into “Couer d’Alene.”
The band finished the evening with their 2011 hit “Rivers and Roads.” The Head and the Heart gracefully walked off the stage, leaving the audience in awe. The crowd made their way towards the exits with an euphoric sense of ease.