Pop

At Glass Animals’ First NYC Show Since 2017, ‘Love’ Was in the Air All Over Again

Glass Animals
Pooneh Ghana

Glass Animals perform at Music Hall of Williamsburg on Feb. 26, 2020 in Brooklyn, New York.

Oxford quartet Glass Animals are known for putting on an electrifying live show. With their underplay at the Music Hall of Williamsburg on Wednesday (Feb. 26) as part of their Deja Vu Tour, they lived up to their reputation.

The 700-capacity venue was brimming with bodies long before set time, as fans lined up to purchase exclusive tour merch and secure a spot as close to the stage as possible. For many, it was not only an opportunity to see Glass Animals (Dave Bayley, Joe Seaward, Ed Irwin-Singer and Drew MacFarlane) play their first New York City show in almost three years, but also to see them in an intimate venue -- the previous headlining tour date took place at Radio City, and before that, they performed an evening set at Panorama Festival.

That night, it was deja vu all over again in more ways than one -- this tour has the group returning to some of the first venues they ever headlined in North America, including MHoW, plus their newest single is titled “Your Love (Deja Vu).” And Dave Bayley seemed more than happy to settle back into his role of merry frontman, dipping in and out of the pit all show and entirely performing one song on a makeshift b-stage. (“You guys smell good down here,” he enthused.)

Pooneh Ghana
Glass Animals perform at Music Hall of Williamsburg on Feb. 26, 2020 in Brooklyn, New York.

The band’s long-awaited return to the stage was felt every moment. The Brooklyn crowd danced and jumped, with most knowing every song by heart, and you could hear fans singing along to not only the words, but to instrumental quirks and effects, too.

Bayley also did a roll call to see which diehard fans saw Glass Animals headline MHoW back in 2014. “How many of you were here the last time we played?” he asked the crowd toward the beginning of the set. There were enough screams in response that he joked, “Oh, all of you? ...Thanks for coming back!”

Throughout the evening, the band tore through cuts from their two albums (2014’s Zaba and 2016’s How To Be A Human Being) and gave a taste of their forthcoming third one, which will be their debut full-length with Republic Records. The yet-unreleased “Tangerine” had the crowd bopping, and everyone already knew the words to their comeback songs “Tokyo Drifting” and “Your Love.”

Finishing with an exuberant cover of the Gnarls Barkley song "Crazy" and their own fan favorite track “Pork Soda,” the applause lasted for several minutes even after they left the stage. The message was clear: Glass Animals have still got it, and on top of that, they might reach a whole new level this era.

The group played their first shows of the year in the UK last week and returned to the U.S. stage on Tuesday (Feb. 25) with a club show in Washington, DC. The Deja Vu Tour is largely sold out, but you can check out the dates here -- and look out for two nights at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in June.

Setlist:

Tokyo Drifting
Life Itself
Black Mambo
Hazey
Poplar St.
The Other Side of Paradise
Tangerine
Gooey
Your Love (Deja Vu)
Cane Shuga
Season 2 Episode 3
Youth
Agnes

Encore:
Crazy
Pork Soda