CHVRCHES seems to be on everyone’s minds as of late. Perhaps it’s their adorable lead singer, Lauren Mayberry, and her spacey-reverberating voice that snakes its way through your brain. Maybe it’s the fact that the other members of the band get really excited, just as adorably excited as she does, when they perform in front of big crowds. The two singers danced and flailed in a way that I can now only associate with CHVRCHES. I saw these lovelies at Virgin Mobile’s Free Fest last weekend in Maryland. If you don’t know about Free Fest, it’s basically a large-scale music festival with tons of great music, vendors, and generally great vibes. Also, it’s all free, attendance wise. They’ve got a cool mission and the entire event donates to a really worthy cause, which you can read about here.
Among the several acts that I came across in the muddy venue that became Merriweather Post Pavilion, CHRVCHES set themselves apart in a lovely way. I suppose it was a little of what I touched on earlier, the excitement of the band-members, that was both charming and modest. But there was something about the performance that felt like it was being given to a small crowd in Brooklyn, intimate yet all-encompassing. It made me feel happy and included. I’m sure you’ve all felt that overwhelming sense of lost-ness while at a music festival, like you’re so far away from the performer (unless you’re one of the few lucky enough to make it to the front or backstage), but that was not the feeling I experienced at all. It probably had something to do with the venue, too.
Other highlights of the festival included a fantastic performance by Vampire Weekend, and a visceral experience with Gareth Emery (coming from someone who really doesn’t get involved with EDM, this is a big statement to make — he did one track that mashed up Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” and Annie Lennox’s “Walking on Broken Glass,” which was magical).
CHVRCHES released their latest album yesterday, and in honor of that, I’ve included my favorite track off the album in this post. Enjoy, and if you like it (which I know you will), give the rest of the album a listen. There’s no room for disappointment.