For the last 12 years, Walk the Moon has been dialing in their look and sound to the point where it’s hard to go any amount of time without hearing their music somewhere. Their songs are definitely earworms, where you’ll find yourself humming their hits without provocation. Between their poppy first hit “Anna Sun,” the multi-platinum “Shut Up and Dance,” and their current radio hit, “One Foot.” Late last year, the band released their third studio album, What If Nothing, and their current tour, which landed at the San Diego House of Blues, is for support of that album.
The vibe in the venue was palpable. From wall to wall of the sold-out show, fans dressed up in flashy clothes, many of which have their face painted in homage to the musicians. As they waited, voices blended together as the venue erupted in a sing-along of The Killers “Mr. Brightside” only to shortly explode into applause and cheers as the lights dimmed. The excitement filled in and erupted again as stage lights blindly lit up to the Lion King’s “Circle of Life” line. ("Nants ingonyama bagithi baba")
The band took the stage, and immediately kicked off a fun night with the electronic and vocal-heavy “Press Restart,” aptly the name of their current tour.
If no one has ever seen a live performance by Walk the Moon, they are doing themselves a disservice. Every show the boys put on is nothing short of a giant dance party, and the crowd, filled with people of all ages, are all eager and willing to join. Singer Nicholas Petricca is a natural showman and fantastic lead for the band. Not only does he actively encourage the audience to dance and express themselves, he will throw himself in the spotlight and dance like nobody is watching. His openness in expression allows the audience to do the same, and it’s an amazing sight to see.
The set covered songs from all their albums, but their biggest singles got the best feedback from the audience. About halfway through the set was their biggest song to date, “Shut Up and Dance,” and there seemed to not be a single person dancing in some way. From along the barricade to the very back, the desire to move spread from person to person like a virus.
Finishing up on “Anna Sun” allowed the band to bring everyone back to the start. Though it’s the “Press Restart” tour, Walk the Moon seems to be making strides in pushing forward their career, and it's interesting to anticipate where they'll end up next. Until then, all there is to do is “Shut Up and Dance.”