Jungle takes victory lap at Fox Pomona ahead of Coachella return

Jungle Fox Pomona 2024 mainbar AB

A day before Coachella 2024 would kick off, lineup highlight Jungle brought their disco party to the Fox Theater in Pomona.

This was a night for hardcore fans of the UK disco kingpins, who were doing an underplay at a venue roughly a tenth of the size of their last LA gig at The Forum last year. They are one of the best live acts currently touring, so it was a real treat to get them to play in such a small and vibrant place.

It’s been nine years since I first got to experience Jungle live and in person at Coachella 2014, a show so good that when I attended the festival the very next weekend, I made sure to be in the tent to see them, and made sure to be as close to the rail as possible. To put into perspective how far they’ve come since then, they subheadlined the second biggest stage two days later at Coachella 2024, playing the Outdoor Theatre set before Gesaffelstein would close it out.

Fans that made the trip to Pomona were treated to about 40 extra minutes of vibes than they would have seen at Coachella 2024, where they were only given 50 minutes to perform. That meant six extra songs. Despite the extra time, they didn’t pussyfoot around in between songs, continuing their trend of rolling one song right into the next with incredible precision, bringing together things like a cross between a jam band and a house music DJ.

This was my 12th time seeing Jungle in concert since that Coachella set nearly a decade ago, and there’s a multitude of reasons I keep going to see them. They continue to keep their music fresh, evidenced by the touring band lineup shift they made when touring in support of their third full-length release Loving in Stereo beginning in 2021.

At first, I remember being bummed to see many talented members exit the band but quickly fell in love with the new feel to Jungle, particularly vocalist and overall jill of all trades Lydia Kitto, who has helped elevate the band to new levels. Kitto’s vocal style has a different feel than the falsetto happy sound of the band’s two first records, and she was given a front facing role on many of the newest album Volcano‘s peppiest tracks. It’s translated extremely well to the live show, and the crowd was extremely in favor of any moment where Kitto took a step forward as the focal point of a song during the show at the Fox Pomona. This bodes well for the future growth of the band as they continue to grow.

The Fox Pomona is an intimate enough venue that being on the floor meant I was covered in sweat pretty early on from moving to the show. They made sure of it by kicking their set off with the single that helped launch them to viral success “Busy Earnin'” and went right into one of the new album’s lead singles “Candle Flame”.

Although there were consistently the seamless transitions that Jungle is known for, it did feel like the transition from “Dominoes” into “The Heat” was a little off beat, but it was a minor glitch in a nearly perfect show. Crowd favorites included “Back on 74”, which even surprised me just how big this song has become (is it a TikTok thing?) and “Happy Man”, which I remember hearing in the opening episode of Netflix guilty pleasure You, a TV show whose second season centered around being the serial killer amidst the vapid LA culture.

Jungle closed the night out with personal favorite “Keep Moving”, which just has another level when experiencing it live and in concert.

I can’t say enough about how good these guys are and I’m looking forward to catching them Saturday at Coachella 2024 weekend two, though the 50 minutes will probably feel like it flew by.

Words by Mark Ortega
Photos by Alayna Bryant