As soon as Two Door Cinema Club’s set in the Mojave tent at Coachella 2011 ended, I promised myself that I would see them again. At the time, they were promoting their debut release, Tourist History.  I was admittedly not that familiar with their material (aside from singles they had released), and upon entering the aforementioned tent, I was probably more excited about the reprieve it offered from the sweltering Indio sun than I was for the band. However, I became acutely aware that I was witnessing something special during the first song of their set, and I spent the next 50 minutes grinning like an idiot and dancing giddily with my friends. Two Door Cinema Club’s set ended up being a surprising contender for my top five performances of the entire festival.

Fast-forward to the present day. Two Door Cinema Club has since put out their sophomore album, Beacon, which has performed admirably on album sales charts around the world. Corresponding with their newest release, the band announced an international tour with a stop in LA at The Hollywood Palladium. Given that I stand not-so-proudly at five feet and two inches, the gigantic, primarily-GA-with-an-unstrategically-placed-balcony Palladium is not my venue of choice in this fair city. Still, a night of standing on my tiptoes to see Two Door Cinema Club was obviously preferable to not seeing Two Door Cinema Club at all.

I arrived at The Palladium last Thursday shortly before 9. Unfortunately, due to a tragic “your name doesn’t seem to be on the list” situation that needed to be cleared up at the will call booth, I wasn’t able to catch the opening act, Friends, whose vocalist I had interviewed earlier last week. I did, however, make it inside the venue in time to witness the random (but kind of really awesome) Robert Miles/Darude old school trance party during the changeover set.

The dimming lights and chorus of screaming girls signaled the beginning of Two Door Cinema Club’s set. They started the night with the lead single from Beacon, “Sleep Alone,” the first verse of which begins deceptively dreamily before the track launches into the driving guitar riffs of the second verse. The enamored shouts and flailing arms seemingly indicated the effectiveness of the opening track, and despite not being particularly fond of the song myself, I was pleased with its placement in the set.

Photo by Jamie Mah

“This Is The Life” has the distinction of being my favorite track from Tourist History, and I could not have been more happy with its live rendition, which was brought to life by Alex Trimble’s warm vocals. This was followed by “Wake Up,” a track that has since grown to be among my favorites from Beacon; it translated better than I had expected in a live setting thanks to guitarist Sam Halliday’s enthusiastic stylings. The band’s newest single, “Sun,” garnered a considerable amount of love from the audience, as did their infectiously danceable anthem “I Can Talk.”

Two Door Cinema Club’s encore set kicked off with my favorite track from Beacon, “Someday.” With its undeniably catchy chorus and addictive guitar riffs, it’s not surprising that this was my favorite song of the night. At the start of their final track, “What You Know,” Trimble elected to open with a slowed-down, acoustic version of the song’s chorus before Halliday launched into the distinctive opening riff. Venue-wide dance party ensued.

Throughout the set, Two Door Cinema Club’s frontman made it abundantly clear that they were very, very grateful as each song in the set was punctuated with an endearing “thank you so much.” Also abundantly clear was the band’s enormous legion of loyal fans, particularly of the female persuasion; my guess is this has a lot to do with Trimble’s unassuming charm. His humble nature is a stark contrast to the stereotypically bombastic rock star, but it suits the band’s feel-good melodies perfectly.

Two Door Cinema Club brought exactly what I was expecting to the table: accessible tunes, serious musical chops, and positive vibes. As far as I can predict, this is only the beginning for these formidable Irish rockers. I look forward to seeing how they continue to grow and evolve with their next release.

Photo by Jamie Mah

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