Celebration was in the air at The Canopy Club on the night of Thursday March 6th. “But Unofficial ended like a weekend ago,” you’re probably thinking. The occasion of this night didn’t involve belligerent drunkenness – besides, of course, the thirsty Thursday Canopy goers. Instead, the festive mood was due to the success of the sophomore album from Headlights, titled Some Racing, Some Stopping, which was released less than a month ago.
The band cracked out the champagne on stage before their opening song, or as the Champaign bred do – shots of hard liquor. Their hour long set began with the album opener “Get Your Head Around It”, which captivated any new listeners from the get-go. To keep the energetic crowd response alive, they trekked on with tracks from the album such as the charming folk-pop number “Cherry Tulips”. The light vocals of keyboardist Erin Fein mixed with the fragile tenor voice of lead guitarist Tristan Wraight gave the band the ability to produce an eloquent feel intermingled with effortless indie pop melodies. The addition of Nick Sanborn from Decibully and John Owen from Shipwreck, for the tour, also gave the usual trio new sounds for live shows, not to mention new dynamics. The Some Racing, Some Stopping tour represents the shift from their previous synth-laden individual tracks to songs that form a well rounded, fluid album.
The last time that I saw Headlights live was only about a year ago on the stage of the Courtyard Café, where the band dug out fan favorites such as “Tokyo” from The Enemies EP. What a difference a year makes.
Headlights put on a performance that expressed that they are a matured group who has realized their true place in the indie rock scene, but who also haven’t forgotten their roots. Faithful fans were satisfied by tracks off of the previous album Kill Them With Kindness layered among the new ones. At the close of the set, the crowd and the band both seemed to share the common feeling of contentment with the new work and the direction that the band is heading in.