Concert review: Tennis at the Loving Touch

May 21, 2015 at 3:08 pm

WHO: Tennis
WHEN: May 20, 2015
WHERE: The Loving Touch, Ferndale

“I feel like Taylor Swift right now,” Tennis’ Alaina Moore said giddily to the doting crowd at the Loving Touch. Playing their first ever show in Michigan, they seemed a little shocked at both the size of the crowd (near capacity) and the overwhelming adoration heaped upon them. “This one is to help make up for all the years we’ve missed,” she said before launching into a brand new song. Indeed, this is a show that was long overdue for a band that has been making music for nearly five years now.

Cape Dory, their first album, was written after the married couple finished college, sold all their possessions, bought a sailboat and navigated the east coast for seven months. The influence on their sound is evident as nautical themes abound. It feels like two lovers traversing the sea on a boat made of hope and wonder, with a subtle nod to the kind of sun-soaked summer days you spent making sandcastles on the beach as a child.

They’ve come along way since that first album and though diminutive and unassuming in appearance, Moore commands the stage with her presence and soulful voice. The band underscores her sugary soprano, wavering between lo-fi, shimmering guitars and fuzzed out beach-combing synths, with various waltzes and Motown-esqe beats providing the foundation upon which everything is laid. You can almost hear her powerful timbre fitting in perfectly with one of those 50’s R&B girl groups like The Shirelles or The Chantelles. “I can’t stop smiling, you guys are so nice,” she said before embarking on the final song of the evening. Let’s just hope we don’t have to wait another five years for them to return.