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St. Lucia At The El Rey: Review

Kendall Robertson |
February 13, 2014 | 9:17 a.m. PST

Staff Reporter

Up and coming South-African musician, Jean-Phillip Grobler, performed at the El Rey Theater this Tuesday, February 11th. You may know him by his stage name: St. Lucia

Sir Sly Opening Act (Kendall Robetrson, 2/11/14)
Sir Sly Opening Act (Kendall Robetrson, 2/11/14)
Sir Sly, a Los Angeles-based band, opened for St. Lucia, performing songs such as “Ghost and “Gold” off their EP “Gold.” Members Landon Jacobs, Jason Suwito and Hayden Coplen reminded the crowd that LA isn’t all sunshine and beach days with their dark-pop vibes.  

Recently deemed ALT 98.7’s “Best New Song of the Year… This Week,” “Gold” was the perfect sultry, electronic/rock note on which to end the band’s performance for the night.

Around 10 p.m., St. Lucia took the stage with Nick Brown, Ross Clark, Nicky Paula and Patricia Beranek. The band opened with “The Night Comes Again,” followed closely by the first song that St. Lucia ever released, “The Old House is Gone.”  

Immediately noticeable are Grobler’s chilling vocal capabilities. According to his webpage, Grobler spent his childhood performing around the world with the prestigious Drakensberg Boys Choir School, honing his singing skills throughout.  

Often harmonizing with Patti Beranek, the sound of St. Lucia is a swirl of smooth vocals, '80s electronic urges and indie-pop bliss.   

After “The Old House is Gone,” St. Lucia played some of their slower-paced songs from their album "When the Night." Though the songs “Before the Dive,” “Closer Than This,” “Wait for Love,” “We Got It Wrong” sounded great, the crowd looked less than enthused.  Many audience members were swaying to the beat, but it wasn’t until St. Lucia launched into their more well-known works that the crowd really got going.

St. Lucia (Kendall Robertson, 2/11/14)
St. Lucia (Kendall Robertson, 2/11/14)

A performance of “All Eyes on You” followed by “Elevate” finally had the audience dancing.  Though many audience members were surprised that these popular songs weren’t saved for the end of the show, their performance brought about a much-needed change of pace.

A surprise cover of Chaka Khan’s “Ain’t Nobody” kept the crowd grooving, leaving the next song “Paper Heart,” to feel slightly out of place with its slow tempo.  St. Lucia then kicked it up again with “The Way You Remember Me” and “Too Close.”

Closing the night, St. Lucia played “September,” which may have been one of the best songs of the night, leaving the crowd cheering for more.  

St. Lucia’s performance at the El Rey Theater had both its highs and its lows. Despite an occasionally unenthusiastic audience, the band was able to maintain their energy and excitement throughout the night.  

By the end of the show, the crowd was dancing as much as St. Lucia.  All in all, a great success.

To listen to the songs St. Lucia performed at El Rey, check out to this Spotify playlist: St. Lucia.

Read more of NT's show reviews here.

Reach Staff Reporter Kendall Robertson here.



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