Twin Fantasy: A Night at the Cradle with Car Seat Headrest

Emily Hicks
Staff Writer

Car Seat Headrest.jpg

PC: Emily Hicks

The Cat’s Cradle in Carrboro welcomed back a familiar band on Friday night, as Car Seat Headrest came to town as part of their Twin Fantasy tour. The air was muggy, but spirits were high as the crowd mulled through the entrance to the venue.

Car Seat Headrest’s cross country tour celebrates the re-recording of lead singer Will Toledo’s solo album, Twin Fantasy, which was originally released in 2011 before the other members were added to the band. The newly released edition boasts a different title: Twin Fantasy (Face to Face).

With the addition of several new members to Car Seat Headrest, the saying ‘the more the merrier’ defines the positive growth of the re-released album.

More existential and gloomy than their first few albums, the Twin Fantasy tour was expected by fans to be a somber show. This being said, Car Seat Headrest pulled a few tricks out of their sleeve and put on a show that left everyone buzzing with excitement by the time they walked off the stage, a mere hour and a half after the set began.

Though short, the set itself didn’t feel as if it was lacking in content. The band’s opening act, Naked Giants, was greeted with vigor and excitement from a crowd eager to see Will Toledo and company take the stage. Only playing around six songs or so, Naked Giants gave the audience a taste of what was to come– organized chaos in a beautiful package.

When the members of Car Seat Headrest made their way on stage, the crowd was obviously warmed up and ready to rock out. The musicians picked up their instruments, warmly greeted the venue, and got the ball rolling. They started off with a hit from Twin Fantasy (Face to Face), but much to the excitement of the audience, also played several old hits from their 2016 album, Teens of Denial.

Their performance Friday night was undeniably one for the fans– they played a healthy blend of their popular albums, while also sneaking in the well-loved tracks from Twin Fantasy (Face to Face). As the show wore on, the audience never wavered in their excitement. During one song, a group of friends could be seen swaying and embracing.

Thematically, Car Seat Headrest’s Twin Fantasy re-recording examines young love and heartbreak– largely surrounding themes of  companionship. The album was well received at its release in February. Seven months later, fans are still thrilled to be hearing it live, in part because the themes are so relatable to a wide range of people. Young, old, and in the middle- most everyone can relate to heartbreak and desire.

Even when the songs were polluted with existential thoughts and radiated gloom, the incredible selection of lights were used to brighten up the tone– a choice that was well received by the audience. At any given point, you could look around and spot a grin plastered on someone’s face as they watched ‘Twin Fantasy’ come to life on stage. Long time fans were thrilled with Toledo’s stage presence and dancing in lieu of a musical instrument. UNC student Marina Greenfeld was ecstatic about Toledo’s clothing of choice for the show.

“I can’t tell if its a skirt, or really wide legged pants. Either way,” she said, “I’m here for it”. In the end, they were pants. The wacky fashion choices perfectly exemplify the traits of Toledo’s personality that fans love so much. As the frontman of the group, and the first original member, Will Toledo is very much himself on stage.

In the past few years, Car Seat Headrest has gone from the bottom to the top. A few years ago, circa 2016, they were opening for larger bands. Now, they go on tours of their own. In the words of Marina Greenfeld,

“It’s crazy being able to have witnessed a band blow up like this. I haven’t ever seen it myself before now.”

From isolation to packed venues, Car Seat Headrest has done just that.

Categories: Arts & Entertainment

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