The inaugural Bases and Brews Music Fest combined the best of both the spring training baseball and the music worlds last weekend. Featuring carnival rides, midway games and a stellar lineup of artists, Atlas trekked out to Surprise, Arizona, for a grand time with Walk the Moon and Lovelytheband.
Lovelytheband took the stage against a stunning backdrop of one of Arizona’s famous sunsets to get the party started on Sunday night. The California trio’s indie rock vibes pulled attendees of all ages into the cool grass to sing along to “Coachella” and “Make You Feel Pretty”. The band is on the verge of releasing their new album and gave us a taste of the upcoming music with their latest single “Sail Away”. Some very dedicated fans lined up along the barricade to dance with the group as they closed their set with “Broken”.
We’re still dealing with unseasonably cold nighttime temperatures in Arizona but Walk the Moon’s dance party warmed everyone right up. It’s been awhile since we’ve been able to groove with this group and they clearly missed us as much as we missed them. Pulling from their first album to kick things off, we swayed to “Quesadilla” and “Lisa Baby” before vocalist Nick Petricca got everyone jumping to “Tightrope” and “One Foot”.
The carnival rides flashed neon in the background, parents hoisted small children onto their shoulders and the energy poured off the band and the fans as the set went on. Petricca is unflinchingly honest in his performances, describing how his own coming out gave new meaning to “Different Colors”- eliciting cheers from an audience bathed in rainbow lights. Another staple in the band’s set has been their spine-tingling cover of The Killers’ “All These Things That I’ve Done” and it hits just as hard over 10 years later.
The band certainly didn’t want anyone going home disappointed so they kept things moving with “Work This Body” right into the smash hit “Shut Up and Dance”. Again, not ones to cast aside tradition, the night ended with another colorful hoedown to the band’s first major single, “Anna Sun”.
The first ever Bases and Brews Music Fest definitely attracted a great crowd to the quieter West Valley, with many diehard fans making their way out of the parks of Phoenix and Tempe to see their favorites perform. There’s something nostalgic and magical about watching the musicians you love from atop a Ferris wheel and we have little doubt that next year’s fest will bring even more curious folks west to enjoy a weekend in the sun.
Check out all the photos from the show!
Story and photos by Olivia Khiel