Irontom had a reason to celebrate Thursday at the Moroccan Lounge. The night was their album release party for “GEL pt. 1.” The lights blinked across an empty stage at 11 p.m. and the crowd cheered in anticipation of the band coming out. Eerie Halloween sounds filled the venue until the band made their entrance. They were ready to launch into the lead track, “Common Chaos,” from their new album when guitarist Zach Irons went down to fiddle with his massive pedal board. “Sorry,” he said. He continued to fiddle around and then cracked a smile, “Technical difficulties at song one.” What better way to start off a song about chaos? The song ends with the lyrics “Common chaos / RIP to the IRS / Common chaos / Common chaos.”
Then the band launched into “Con Artist,” as drummer Dylan Williams jump-started the song. It is a song with tidbits of lyrics such as “I got kicked out of Scientology.” Lead singer Harry Hayes later yelled out to the crowd, “We can’t hear you, L.A.!” The band got the crowd bouncing for “Down for Whatever.” After keeping fans in a state of frenzy, the band gave them a temporary respite as it dug a decade deep into its song library, swaying into “Goin’ Slow.”
Throughout the set, Hayes kept his arms in constant motion, emphasizing the beats and lyrics with fingers pointed upwards or arms stretched high. He wasn’t going to be the only one exercising those arm muscles. At one point he told the crowd, “We f*cking love you guys. I said, I love you,” with the crowd yelling it back. “Let me see those hands, hands up.”
The back half of the set included a Gorillaz cover, “Feel Good Inc.” One might dare say that the guitar riffs and beat poetry singing made this cover top the original. “Partners” had the crowd pumped as the band went off on a lengthy rock jam. Having worn a double set of shirts throughout the set, Hayes took the two off, showing off his chest that glistened in sweat. The band then closed out the night with “Be Bold Like Elijah,” sending the crowd off with a song encouraging fans to be their best.
The one song that the band didn’t include on their setlist was “Grace.” It would have been a fun selection, because their special guest of the night was Grace McKagan. Her rock pedigree shone through in “Heart of Hearts” that has the lyrics, “When you see me / Oh, when you see me / do you really see me? Yeah.” The vocals were pierced with emotions throughout those lyrics. McKagan has the stage presence of a rock star veteran.
Irontom setlist: Common Chaos, Con Artist, Call Me the West, Down for Whatever, Mr. Artificial, Kid Midnight, Goin Slow, Narcissist, Big Shot, Stick Figure Attack, Super//Star, Feel Good Inc (Gorillaz cover), Partners, Be Bold Like Elijah
Photos and review by Notes From Vivace