[live recap] The Delta Spirit @ the Paradise

THE DELTA SPIRIT packed out the Paradise Rock Club last Tuesday, thrilling an eclectic crowd of burnout college kids, 30-something hippies, and just about anyone in between.

The San Diego indie-Americana quintet’s upbeat sound -- the beachy ska sounds of Nada Surf with the vocal qualities of City and Colour’s Dallas Green plus a little West Coast attitude and thigh-clapping beats and upbeat lyrics -- combined with a seriously enlivened on-stage presence made us not only like them for what they do musically, but made us feel all tingly and brought upon this strange, personal, “I kinda love these people” vibes.

In an venue like the Paradise, where structural poles dominate the parts of the floor nearest the stage and the balcony hangs above much of the far parts of the floor, it can be difficult for a band to connect with its audience as a whole. Delta Spirit, however, managed to involve everyone in the venue in its performance. “This is a dance number,” lead vocalist Matthew Vasquez announced to the crowd before continuing on the same old combination of guitars and the occasional trashcan lid, “like every fucking song we write.”

By “dance number,” he was not implying that folks in the crowd would bump and grind, or mosh, but rather that they would dance on their own – something like what Robyn might encourage. One man on the balcony was visible getting down with his bad self, arms rubbing all over his body and head tilted back as the music took over.

Mike Barry is a student at Boston University and an editorial intern at the Boston Phoenix.

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