Cold War Kids at The Wiltern, Los Angeles, CA, January 22, 2010 | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Tuesday, August 11th, 2020  

Cold War Kids

Alec Ounsworth, Cold War Kids

Cold War Kids and Alec Ounsworth at The Wiltern, Los Angeles, CA, January 22, 2010, January 22nd, 2010

Jan 28, 2010
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The Wiltern—it should be noted—has excellent pretzels. The sound mixing however? Suspect at best. As the night wore on and Cold War Kids took the stage it improved, but sadly the brunt of the bad sound fell on dynamic opener Alec Ounsworth. Despite having a fantastic hat and compelling stage persona, he couldn't quite rise above the truly crappy conditions.

I'm almost tempted to review how he might have sounded. After all, I was quite intrigued by his solo album Mo Beauty. When his idiosyncratic voice peaked though the sonic mess it sounded like the new-era Tom Waits we've (read: I've) been looking for. The band energetically plowed through songs—including a set-ending jam session that clocked in at over 10 minutes—as though their last glass of whisky depended on it. But, at the halfway point when Ounsworth announced he was playing songs from his solo album, Flashy Python project, and band Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, I found myself feeling vaguely mournful and preparing to band my head against a wall. Few things are sadder than what might have been, or what's happening in front of you that you can't hear!

After taking solace in salty snack foods, the crisp mixing of Cold War Kids' set was a welcome relief. Playing to a hometown audience, the quartet seems particularly relaxed, tearing though their hits with a well-earned ease. An audience attempt at a sing-along failed during Credence Clear Water Revival cover "Long As I Can See the Light" (it was more an enthusiastic group mumble), but the band succeeded in raising the roof during set closer "We Used to Vacation," even if the dedication to Haiti felt somewhat tagged on.

While the audience politely sat though the more polished material off of recent EP Behave Yourself, it was songs from their debut full-length, Robbers & Cowards that got the most energetic response, particularly album highlights, "Hang Me Up to Dry," and "Saint John." What started out as a somewhat low energy affair quickly blossomed, and the band was finally met with the heroes' welcome they deserve, carrying band and audience alike through the rest of the night.

Cold War Kids

1. I've Seen Enough

2. Hair Down

3. Audience

4. Red Wine, Success!

5. Welcome To The Occupation

6. Coffee Spoon

7. Dreams Old Men Dream

8. Relief

9. Hang Me Up To Dry

10. Santa Ana Winds

11. Hospital Beds

12. Long As I Can See The Light (Credence Clearwater Revival cover)

13. Saint John

14. Something Is Not Right With Me


15. Mexican Dogs

16. Tell Me In The Morning

17. Sermons

18. We Used To Vacation




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March 1st 2010

This show was so amazing! Hope to see them again soon!