Admittedly, I’ve attended quite a few shows over the years. A lot, really, and in all those gigs and festivals I’ve seen over a thousand different artists. So, although I had never seen Miya Folick before her headlining turn at West Hollywood’s Troubadour, I was seasoned enough to recognize the signs right away that the record release show would be anything but ordinary.
Upon arriving 45 minutes before opener Andy Stavas took the stage, I noticed that the front row was already claimed in its entirety by fans across various demographics that never left, not even to use the bathroom for a few minutes. I don’t expect that level of fan devotion when seeing local artists, since it’s usually reserved for the instant-sellout shows of Best New Music and fresh-off-the-festival-circuit international acts. And for that matter, it’s rare nowadays to go to a show this size that isn’t at a Goldenvoice or Spaceland Presents venue. Seriously, the Troubadour needs more love nowadays.
The level of devotion evident among the fans piqued my curiosity to the point that it raised my expectations that were already elevated after second-hand word on recent her Echo Park Rising set (it conflicted with Starcrawler). Fortunately, Miya Folick proved the hype was real once she took the stage.
For starters, when Miya Folick debuted her first album Premonitons onstage, she ran the gamut from tear-inducing ballads like “Thingamajig” to chip punk bangers like “Stop Talking.” No matter the mood, she delivered it with an emotive vocal prowess that commanded attention. And attention is what Folick received from the packed crowd, along with palpable enthusiasm.
What really seemed to endear Folick to her fans are the feels. Her more upbeat, singalong tunes came across as cathartically anthemic, and beneath the singalong choruses was an unabashedly dark side. And, of course, the sad songs felt soooo good, as is generally the case for strong pop music. Considering the years of buzz around Los Angeles and the international media attention surrounding Premonitions, Folick will be conquering the musical world in 2019.
Speaking of all things out of the ordinary, Andy Stavas started the evening with a set unlike anything one would expect to see at such a stage. As Stavas played a delicate neo-classical set, an interpretive dancer performed along to a hushed, attentive crowd with a pin-drop vibe where nobody dared to speak.
Premonitions just dropped today, October 26, via Terrible Records/Interscope Records! Listen to it below:
Words and photos by Frank Mojica