Concert Review: Walk The Moon

12573062_10153745755526206_2346238949939258074_nThe Lion King’s “Circle of Life” blasts through the speakers, filling Fort Canning Green with the opening sounds of its familiar African cry. Lead singer Nicholas Petricca and his 3 band mates, decked out in various colors, from bright red pants and pastel blue hair to simple black t-shirt and jeans, leap on stage, and instantly the energy’s palpable., They pump their fists and swing their hips to the rhythm, dancing with abandon across the stage.


Though the liveliness of the American pop rockers is infectious, for a moment you wonder: Isn’t this a Walk The Moon concert, did we walk into a Disney musical by mistake? And then, the song cleverly segues into the opening number, “Jenny” and the audience shrieks in delight.


Most of us know this 4-piece Ohio band at least by their hit single “Shut Up and Dance” from their second album, Talking is Hard. Released in 2014, this song was so wildly popular that it’s been among the top of Billboard’s Hot Rock Songs chart for 24 weeks, beating other famous songs like Imagine Dragons’ “Radioactive”. Like all chart-toppers, this song has no lack of covers from prominent artistes and YouTubers; like Kina Grannis, and Singapore’s The Sam Willows. The rest of “Talking is Hard” brings to the table a good mix of summer-y indie pop rock as well with fresh tracks like “Different Colours” and “Up 2 U”. Think the feel-good indie pop of Circa Waves and gritty undertones of The Vaccines.


Despite this Jan 19 gig being their first in Singapore, the quartet looked right at home and very much in their element, diving straight into their second tune “Sidekick” without hesitation. Joined by Eli Maiman on the guitar, bassist Kevin Ray and Sean Waugaman furiously banging on the drums, the guys belted its catchy chorus of, “Sidekick, sidekick / Do you, do you, do you wanna be my sidekick, sidekick?”.


“Singapore!” Nick hollers, “it’s been a long time coming, but we’re finally together now!“

“Nick, I’ll be your sidekick!” a few voices squeal from the crowd. This sweet, personal touch of speaking to his fans like they’re the closest of friends seems to be Petricca’s strong suit. The concert’s 2-hour, 15-song run was peppered with little speeches that allowed his exuberant personality to shine through. Like after the final chord of “Tightrope” washed over the frenzied audience, the lead singer grinned bashfully and remarked, “We’ve been tweeting and instagramming with fans over here. Now we’re not pen pals anymore, we’re real friends over here with you guys.”


Call this calculated charm, but we have to admit, we were pretty enamoured by the end of the concert, especially when Maiman broke into the epic Star Wars theme on his guitar to end “Work This Body”. The audience clapped along and stomped their feet, whooping excitedly upon hearing the familiar first 2 notes. Despite Waugaman’s pre-concert Instagram post about playing in a cemetery (complete with a photo of him standing among gravestones in Fort Canning), the crowd was far from dead.


The concert had its share of touching moments too. Walk The Moon’s tribute to the late David Bowie, who had passed away just 9 days earlier, being one of them. With the stage awash in a sea of dark blue light, the band delivered their heartfelt rendition of “Let’s Dance”, even injecting local flavour into the original lyrics by adapting “Let’s sway under the moonlight” to “Let’s sway under the Singapore moonlight”. The night then took a slower turn with “Portugal”, a touching track about how no one is truly alone. “It’s all about reinforcing in your brain: no matter how alone you feel, how isolated, you have us, you have love and support in your life,” Petricca explains earnestly to the crowd that was a mix of enthusiastic teenagers and working adults.


As with most of their tracks, “I Can Lift a Car” sounded as uplifting as on Talking Is Hard, and though it began drizzling, the rain didn’t quell the euphoria of the concert, with people still twirling on their picnic mats and singing with faces upturned to the sky.


Of course, the night ended off with both the band and the packed Fort Canning Green dancing madly to “Shut Up and Dance”, but not before they were called back on stage for an encore with “Anna Sun”, a popular track from their debut album that all the fans at the concert probably loved.


Let’s hope we don’t have to wait for a blue moon before Walk The Moon can return and we can dance with them under the starry sky once more.


(All photos courtesy of of LAMC Productions/Aloysius Lim)




  1. Jenny
  2. Sidekick
  3. Avalanche
  4. Different Colors
  5. Tightrope
  6. Let’s Dance (David Bowie cover)
  7. Spend Your $$$
  8. Up 2 U
  9. Work This Body
  10. Portugal
  11. Aquaman
  12. Lisa Baby
  13. I Can Lift a Car
  14. Shut Up and Dance



  1. Anna Sun