COIN continues Rock’N Roosevelt’s long line of indie power acts, bringing their own brand of energetic, synth-pop to UC San Diego, supported by Moontower and student band Silent Island.
As Winter Quarter came to a close, Eleanor Roosevelt College put on its annual Rock’N Roosevelt concert. The event is known for featuring a spectrum of artists, from upcoming local indie rock acts to the more established and nationally known acts headlining the event. Previously, ERC has brought on the likes of groups such as Bad Suns, The Mowgli’s, and Saint Motel. The college once again did not disappoint in 2019, bringing forward COIN, the Nashville-based indie rock group with hit songs “Talk Too Much” and “I Don’t Wanna Dance.”
The event started at 8 p.m., but that did not stop die-hard fans from forming lines as early as 5:30 p.m. Excitement was in the air as fans entered Price Center Ballroom West and quickly ran for the front barricade to ensure a prime view of their favorite bands.
Starting off the night was Silent Island, a band composed entirely of UC San Diego students with a surf-rock style. The most notable aspect of the band was by far the charisma of its frontman, Neeco. It was impossible not to recognize him, as adoring fans throughout the crowd echoed his name every chance they got, making sure that their love and support for the current Thurgood Marshall College resident assistant, and apparent indie rock heartthrob, was on full display.
Using extremely different pacing throughout its tracks, Silent Island played a few smooth pop-based songs and got the crowd moving with a more up-tempo alt-styled track, prompting the crowd to “go ham if [they] want.” In its entirety, Silent Island did a commendable job setting the night up with a welcoming and wholesome set.
Following the performance of Silent Island was Moontower. Moontower featured tracks with a bit more of a pop and hip-hop influence, and it had an interesting set design with four light beams in the formation of an “M.” Once again, the group quickly established a connection with the crowd, bantering about previous performances on the UCSD campus, small backyard shows, and the initial formation of the band at the school.
Once again, the group delivered a stellar performance, primarily due to the energy it laid out on the stage. Whether it was venturing to the edge of the stage and standing on the amps, or directly placing himself in the crowd, Chase Lawrence, the group’s frontman, stole the show and featured a level of star power that could one day fill arenas. The delivery of each line and ability to control the crowd was impressive coming from a group that was not even the night’s headlining event. With so much movement and interaction, the set seemed to zoom by, which ultimately left the crowd ready for the main event.
Finally, around 9 p.m., the indie rock stars were on the stage and immediately got into their set. There was no conversation to start the performance; it immediately kicked off, and the crowd did not seem to mind in the slightest. Lawrence, the band’s lead singer and pianist, had a sort of charm that made it obvious as to where the band finds its success and virality. Walking out in a droopy cardigan and a sense of bedroom-pop relatability, Lawrence completely lived up to the hype following the band. His vocals were vastly impressive and all done with enough motion to power a small village. Whether it was headbanging or jumping, Lawrence and his bandmates captivated the crowd with each song and action.
However, Lawrence offered much more than his vocals; his ability to interact with the crowd was truly fun to observe. At times the COIN frontman entered the crowd and allowed himself to be a part of the festivities in the first few rows. Adoring fans called close friends through FaceTime to show them the performance, and naturally, Lawrence took a cell phone and directly serenaded a lucky girl on a FaceTime call, much to the enjoyment of the crowd.
The highlights of the performance were when the group performed its hit song “Talk Too Much” and track “Hannah.” The crowd seemed to know just about every word, and almost everyone exited a bigger fan of COIN than they were when they walked in.
As the performance came to a close, Lawrence shared a wholesome story about performing on the UCSD campus years ago to a crowd of about seven, and explained how much it meant to him to be here again to a ballroom full of fans. The set as a whole was not only impressive but also extremely touching, making for a great conclusion to the annual Rock’N Roosevelt and a great introduction to Finals Week. As a whole, the staff of Rock’N Roosevelt impressed by presenting a diverse set of groups and a wonderful headliner; all of this resulting in another successful year for the event and hopeful anticipation for what 2020 has in store.
Date: March 8, 2019
Location: PC Ballroom West
Image courtesy of McKenna Johnson.