The upcoming band’s first-ever Canadian show proved to be a memorable one
In the last year, Texas-based band Surfaces, have slowly yet surely developed a core fan-base – boasting 3.6 million monthly listeners and over 130 000 followers on Spotify. The band is made up of childhood friends Colin Padalecki and Forrest Frank. Their musical style can best be described as an amalgamation of soul, blues, and jazz focused around pop melodies; bubble-gum pop with a little more grit. Both sonically and lyrically, their music carries a sense of optimism and a motif of happiness which makes the band’s content an easy listen for fans and casual listeners alike.
After the buzzing success of their Where the Light Is project, Surfaces embarked on their “The Warm Winter Tour” which reached Toronto’s very own Mod Club Theatre on January 8. Being the band’s very first concert outside of their home country, this show had a lot of anticipation surrounding it and it ultimately met the high expectations.
Quite surprisingly, the Mod Club’s 640-person capacity quickly filled up prior to the opener’s set time. While Surfaces are not close to being the hottest band out, their fanbase is definitely dedicated. The opener was Conrad Hsiang – known on stage by moniker Public Library Commute. Hsiang is new to making music and while it was clear that most of the audience was not too familiar with his discography, the crowd was gracefully bopping along to his slow ballads and cheering him on every chance they got. It was clear that Hsiang was lacking the preforming experience of a seasoned veteran – the theatrics and motion that makes a show visually exciting – however, he is definitely talented. His voice was memorable, his style was unique, and he made an effort to genuinely connect with the fans there. Ultimately, Surfaces made a good choice by bringing him on road with them.
Shortly afterwards, Surfaces took the stage and got the crowd on their toes from the jump. The crowd watched and harmonized along in awe as the band delivered their enchanting upbeat melodies. They were joined by pianist and saxophonist Lito Hernandez who is most notably known for his work done in Kanye West’s “Sunday Service” performances. The most interesting aspect of the show was perhaps the many stand-out moments that each member on stage had. Forrest Frank is the frontman and therefore fills the role which garners the most attention. However, Colin Padalecki and Lito Hernandez also made their presence felt that night with their abundance of talent and occasional solos.
Intermittently and between songs, the performers would take their time to address the crowd, gauging the content of the audience and ensuring that they were having fun. Stand out moments from their set included their live renditions of their two biggest songs – Sunday Best and 24 / 7 / 365. While the crowd knew Surfaces’ entire discography fairly well, there was an extra bit of charm when the songs played were ones that absolutely everyone was singing along to.
Despite preforming in a fairly small venue, Surfaces admirably put thought into the visual aspect of their show. The background lighting – formed by multiple large LED panels – was coloured to match the warm tones and pastel style of their album covers. It intelligibly heightened the optimistic atmosphere that their music strives to embody.
On top of this, the personality of the members shined throughout this performance. All three performers had large smiles on their faces and held a carefree and down-to-earth aura which matched the substance of their songs.
The Surfaces show was ultimately a great experience which gave fans an intimate look into the band’s personality whilst treating them to great live renditions of some of their best songs. As this entire tour sold out very quick, it is inevitable that the next time Surfaces come to Toronto, it will be at a larger venue – making January 8’s experience a truly memorable one.