BØRNS concert review


Caroline Judd

Garrett Clark Borns, the lead singer of the band BØRNS, performed in St. Louis on Jan. 30 at the Pageant. Dressed in leather, Borns paraded around the stage while singing over the sound of screaming fans.

Maria Newton, Staff Writer

Alternative rock band BØRNS took the stage in St. Louis on Jan. 30 for a concert at the Pageant. The small venue provided fans with a close-up view of the main singer/songwriter Garrett Clark Borns while he performed songs from his 2015 album “Dopamine” as well as music from his new album “Blue Madonna” which was released fewer than three weeks before the concert. BØRNS is a five-person band with the only men being the lead singer and the lead guitarist. The rest of the musicians, (keyboardist, bass player and drummer), are women. The bass player was dwarfed by her instrument providing for a comic effect, but the entire band rocked it and were clearly talented. The concert was an amazing experience for new fans and old, faithful followers alike.  

The concert began with two well-chosen and talented opening acts. The first was Mikky Ekko, a newly established performer. He is mostly known for the writing of “Stay,”a hit performed by R&B artist Rihanna, in which he is also featured, but recently he has branched out with his own pop alternative music. He had an amazing stage presence and went into the crowd while closing out his set with “Stay.” The crowd had already been enjoying Ekko’s music, but really got into the popular hit and sang along.

The second opener was Charlotte Cardin, an artist who opened her set on a piano and moved to a more personal, close-up position later on by standing on the very edge of the stage holding a microphone. Her music is influenced by jazz, but modern and electric. Cardin provided great energy and got the crowd excited with her upbeat hits before slowing it down to sing some more ballad-type songs.

Once the openers had left the stage, the crowd of people stood anxiously waiting for the main act. However, it took BØRNS 45 minutes to arrive on stage, making it about 9:40 p.m. on a Tuesday night before the main performance even started.

The performance was well worth the wait. BØRNS began by playing their brand new album, “Blue Madonna” from top to bottom. Despite the newness of the album, eager fans sang along and many knew every single word already. The top-to-bottom set up meant that the first song performed was “God Save Our Young Blood” which is an upbeat, yet chill track that is one of the favorites on the album.

Throughout all the songs, Borns accented his singing with interpretive dance moves like wiping his brow while singing about sweating or lying down on stage while singing about sleep. After every song, Borns spoke softly into the microphone saying “thank you” in a humble voice. After one song towards the middle, he had left the microphone on the stand in the front of the stage and had run to the back to start another song. But, before starting he ran back to the mic stand to make sure he said thank you. It was an interesting and quirky addition that had the crowd giggling and engaged.

After getting about halfway through the new album, Borns took some time to say thanks for some roses that had been delivered to his dressing room stating comically that they “smelled like roses.” At this moment, two more fans threw more roses at the performer to which he responded with a simple ‘oh my’ and thank you, a response that was consistent with his slightly awkward yet entertaining demeanor.

The band left the stage without playing any songs from their previous album “Dopamine”, but were enthusiastically cheered back for an encore. In the encore, they played classics from the earlier album starting with “10,000 Emerald Pools,” “American Money” and “Holy Ghost.” They closed with their most popular song “Electric Love.” The crowd was ecstatic and the screaming was insane. Overall, the concert was a great blend of new and old and BØRNS provided a great experience for the St. Louis fans.

The Parkway West Pathfinder rates the BØRNS concert: 9/10