KROQ Acoustic Christmas, Night Two
For the second night of its 22nd Acoustic Christmas extravaganza, KROQ put on a strong show featuring both up-and-comers and rock icons. The proceeds benefited the children's charities of Al Wooten, Jr Heritage Center and Para Los Niños. There were hardly any acoustic instruments -- making the name of the show slightly misleading -- but this was still an awesome show.
Because of its circular stage, one band could get ready while the other performed, so there was never a long delay in between sets. Of the up-and-comers, Foster The People was the band that the audience had the strongest early connection with. Mark Foster had command of the crowd throughout what felt like a very short 30-minute set. The audience sang almost every word and fed off the singer's energy, dancing in the aisles.Naturally, "Pumped Up Kicks," the band's signature song, received the loudest ovation, but the nine-song set demonstrated why Foster The People are a staple on rock radio.
Florence and The Machine took the show to the next level. Dressed in angelic hippie garb, the redheaded Welsh singer's voice sounds better in person than on the record. Mixing in songs of their latest release Ceremonials and 2009's Lungs, Welch and her band demonstrated why they are one of the best live bands out today.The 25-year-old frontwoman has been called this generation's Stevie Nicks, with her to her angelic physical presence and unmistakable vocals. "Dog Days Are Over" and "What The Water Gave Me" showed that Welch has the ability to take over a show at any time.
Florence and The Machine may have brought the intensity, but Mumford & Sons had the crowd dancing and singing to their brand of catchy brand of alt-folk. The British band's fans were extremely vocal throughout the quartet's set.