Greta Van Fleet delivered an exceptional performance at Detroit’s Fox Theatre on Saturday December 29th. The concert was the second of three sold out shows for the band’s Michigan homecoming. In the holiday spirit, the band also joined forced with Gleaners Community Food Bank, setting up canned food donation stations at each of the concerts.
The Frankenmuth natives have had an unbelievable year releasing an acclaimed debut album, and just being nominated for four Grammy awards.
Opening the show was the talented husband and wife duo, Ida Mae from the UK. With a wave, guitarist Chris Turpin greeted the crowd.
“Good evening, Detroit. There’s a lot of you out there” …and with that, the pair was off on their incredible set. The musicians’ talent was evident from the very first note.
The audience, who was ready for great music, welcomed Ida Mae warmly. The band presented sharp rhymes and impressive playing. Stephanie Jean delivered lovely vocals and kept rhythm. The band had more than enough original material to round out a great set.
Guitarist and singer Chris played with a slide, while his wife kept rhythm. Her beautiful voice complimented her husband’s soulful sound flawlessly.
The band commented on being grateful to be at the theatre with their friends, Greta Van Fleet. They kept an open dialogue with the audience, talking about moving to Nashville, writing music, and even shouting out the gorgeous theatre itself.
Overall, Ida Mae was a wonderful opener to set the stage for the night’s main act.
Greta Van Fleet’s Peaceful Army of fans were out in droves to support their musical heroes. The audience was filled with all types of folks, young and old. Some were dressed in full on 60’s and 70’s attire, an appropriate homage to the band’s undeniable throwback sound. One fact was absolutely unmistakable; the turnout was rock n’ roll fans through and through.
The lights dimmed, and GVF took to the stage right around 9:30 PM. The beautiful Fox Theatre was alive with energy right off the bat as the audience ignited with applause that rarely dimmed throughout the night.
Keeping up a lovely tradition and class act move, lead singer Josh Kiszka handed out roses to fans. Greta Van Fleet wasted no time getting to the music as they started off their night strong with an intro into “Cold Wind”, the second track off their debut LP, “Anthem Of The Peaceful Army”.
The band was dressed every bit the rockstar part. Josh in a golden vest, adorned with a headband lined with draping feathers. Guitarist Jake Kiszka sported a black military-style jacket, whilst shirtless underneath. Bassist Sam Kiszka and drummer Danny Wagner kept a classic, minimalistic feel as well. The attire suited the band and night perfectly.
Second in the set, the crowd went wild for the band’s hit, “Safari Song”. To conclude the song, Danny Wagner drummed and exceptional solo. He was also celebrating his birthday!
Throughout the night, Greta Van Fleet performed tracks from their debut LP, as well as jams from their EPs that grabbed attention from around the world.
Next up, the band presented one of their Grammy nominated tracks, the epic “Black Smoke Rising”.
During “Flower Power”, bassist Sam Kiszka switched instruments to get down on an organ. A vase of white roses was perched upon it.
Josh exclaimed, “Watch me now!” as the band started appropriately into “Watch Me”, a Labi Siffre cover. During “Watch Me”, Josh Kiszka took to his mike stand, feeling every bit of the music. At times, standing next to his brother Jake, who absolutely shredded on guitar.
When the song concluded, Josh flashed a peace sign and thanked the audience.
“Now this next song if you know the words, sing along.” The band started into “The Music Is You”, a beautiful John Denver cover. Throughout the night, Greta Van Fleet put their musical knowledge and appreciation on full display.
During “You’re The One”, singer and guitarist were back to back singing the heartfelt chorus together. Jake traded his electric guitar for an acoustic for the softer, more intimate jam. Josh threw a few “Here comes the sun” lines in for a thoughtful touch. His effortlessly powerful vocals soared throughout the theatre the entire night through.
Next under a yellow-hued light, Greta Van Fleet presented the lead single for their new album, a track called “When The Curtain Falls”. The celebratory crowd danced and sang along accordingly.
After, the lights dimmed and in a blue smoke haze, the band started into “Lay Down (Candles In The Rain)”, a cover of the 1970 Melanie track. Jake Kiszka took to center stage for an unmatched guitar solo, which was a common theme of the evening. Josh Kiszka added a passionate touch with tambourine.
During “Edge Of Darkness”, Josh Kiszka accepted a red rose from a fan and added it to the collection atop the organ. The crowd positively erupted when guitarist Jake started playing his guitar behind his back and over his shoulders. He didn’t miss a beat. Josh continued on tambourine and ended the song with a powerful note. The band thanked the crowd, and exited stage left.
The Fox Theatre roared with cheers and applause from the second Greta Van Fleet disappeared from view. There was even a loud “GRE-TA” chant going. Cell phone flashlights and lighters danced in the air, illuminating the anxious crowd. The audience hit a crescendo as Josh Kiszka reappeared with a wave, band in tow, and said, “Detroit, we love you!”
To start off the encore, the band performed another awesome track also from their latest release, “Brave New World.” Next, Greta Van Fleet rocked out with “Lover, Leaver” as the crowd danced along. During the first chorus, the crowd went mental for Josh’s dazzling vocals and creative microphone effects.
The encore was far from over as the band continued onto their massive track, “Highway Tune”, then a terrific cover of Muddy Waters’ “Rollin’ And Tumblin'”.
The band kept the music jiving, riffing into Howlin’ Wolf’s “Evil”, and the Black Keys “I Got Mine”. Greta Van Fleet closed out their night jamming together, their musical talent shining bright.
Greta Van Fleet will be wrapping up their string of Fox Theatre shows tomorrow night, then will continue to tour extensively into 2019.
Review and photos by: Tiffany Cuthrell
Michigan native rockers, Greta Van Fleet released an incredible new single, with the full support of the mitten state behind them. The single “When The Curtain Falls” dropped on Tuesday July 17th at midnight via the band’s social media outlets.
With catchy riffs and powerful vocals, the Frankenmuth fellas present a track that does not disappoint, and sticks true to their sound. The band has been making waves with their undeniable throwback presence, selling out shows left and right.
The single is surely a sample of great things to come, as the band is set to release their debut full-length album at some point this summer.
Greta Van Fleet will be performing on “The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon” on Thursday July 26th.
Be sure to check out their performance, and stay tuned for more great music coming from a band that’s certainly doing rock ‘n roll right.
Review by Tiffany Cuthrell, photo by Travis Shinn
The four piece band hails from the cozy town of Frankenmuth, with a powerful sound that juxtaposes the farmer feel of mid-Michigan.
Greta Van Fleet’s debut EP, “Black Smoke Rising” was released on April 21st, 2017. Their lead single, “Highway Tune” was also featured on the Showtime smash hit show, “Shameless”.
Their music has been present on local new rock alternative radio station, 89X, and the band will be making an appearance at 101.1 the WRIF‘s RIFF Fest on September 29th.
GVF will be joining headliners at WRIF Fest such as Rob Zombie, Five Finger Death Punch, and Halestorm.
The band will also be touring throughout the US and the UK into October.
Check them out at a venue near you!
Full tour dates below:
09/26: The Black Heart – London, UK
09/27: Boston Music Room – London, UK
09/29: WRIF RIFF Fest – Detroit, MI
09/30: WJJO – Sonic Boom Festival – Janesville, WI
10/01: Louder Than Life – Louisville, KY
10/03: Ottobar – Baltimore, MD
10/05: Funhouse at Mr. Smalls – Pittsburg, PA
10/06: Main Street Armory – Rochester, NY
10/07: Rock Allegiance – Camden, NJ
10/10: O’Connors Irish Pub – Clarksville, TN
10/11: SideTracks Music Hall – Huntsville, AL
10/12: One Eyed Jacks – New Orleans, LA
10/15: 97.1 The Eagle Freakers Ball – Frand Prairie, TX
10/19: The Troudbadour – Los Angeles, CA
10/20: Moroccan Lounge – Los Angeles, CA
10/21: Aftershock Festival – Sacramento, CA
10/23: Hawthore Theatre – Portland, OR
10/24: Tractor Tavern – Seattle, WA
10/29: The Troubadour – Los Angeles
10/30: The Troubadour – Los Angeles
11/01: The Realto Theatre – Tucson, AZ
11/30: Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL
12/02: Sokol Auditorium – Omaha, NE
12/05: Bowery Ballroom – New York, NY
12/06: Bowery Ballroom – New York, NY
12/12: Capone’s – Johnson City, TN
12/14: Delmar Hall – St. Louis, MO
12/15: Granada Theatre – Lawrence, KS
12/16: Wooly’s – Des Moines, IA
12/18: Mercy Lounge – Nashville, TN
12/19: Mercy Lounge – Nashville, TN
Words by: Tiffany Cuthrell, photos courtesy of Ford Fairchild (featured) and Chris M. Junior (live)