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Concert Review: Cigarettes After Sex Feel Exactly Like Their Name In Music Hall of Williamsburg

Many times when you watch a sex scene in a movie, you see the protagonist light a cig afterward like a “cool down” from his or her passion. As he or she smokes, with each drag you see a thought form. It is like the cigarette is only a physical tool for their mind to release and reflect their feelings. Cigarettes After Sex draw that mentality by making music that feels like an aftermath analysis on the acts of love you have committed. In this Music Hall Of Williamsburg performance, they gave their audience one biggest acts of love you can have: good music.

Before I discuss the amazing performance/ music of Cigarettes After Sex, I have to discuss the importance of the staging/ set. Many times, in a concert, you may not notice how essential a backdrop is in setting up a concert’s mood, but Cigarettes After Sex used their background brilliantly. As black and white pictures of torn cities changed behind Cigarettes After Sex, the images deeply affected the audience and set up a mood of awareness and confronting consciousness. The atmosphere makes sense for a band that writes lyrics that are simple but potent in their mindfulness. Black and white pictures are renown for capturing life in a honest and spiritual fashion, and were fitting for the band’s musical vibe of cool, calm, and seductive rhythms that enter your ears like hypnotic swirls pulling you into its loop. Yet, the images of rubble and devastated towns gave a sense of darkness that resonated with the crazy politics of our time and past week of consistent announcements of hateful/ chaotic mandates being passed down. As war-ridden spaces displayed behind, MHOW felt like a dark hole we had all entered to witness light again, and Cigarettes After Sex was going to show us that light through their music.

Cigarettes After Sex played a passionate set that showed a lust for life or your lover does not have to be loud or frenetic; it can glide over you like a red, satin robe kissing your skin. What was so endearing and enlightening about their set is the dark lighting and images helped to place attention on the words and vocals of Greg Gonzalez. Lyrically and vocally, Gonzalez gave a stunning contrast to the dilapidation flicking behind him. It was as if amongst the tattered structures, Gonzalez voice was rising like a call to all citizens to stop hiding, the battle has passed, and now its time to remember why you fight the war: for love. Gonzalez writes music that is dedicated to affection, and the artful expressions either through words, body, or feeling that we show to our relationships. Honestly, he is one of the most beautiful lyricists you can witness live, and has a capacity to makes his songs feel like classic poems. He carries an old world ability to capture human nature with vividness and combines it with modern times more honest approach to the hardships and vulnerabilities love stirs with us. You never know how much healing you need as a human being until you decide to give your heart to another person.  Wanting to love them fully and healthily moves you to better, and Gonzalez dreamily captures that worthy challenge. Moreover, I am in love with his voice.

Playing off their record I and new singles, the music felt like the last whimsical, slow dances that occur at the end of a ball, with Gonzalez voice having the slow, sultry casualness to capture the magic of love. Cigarettes after Sex play slowly paces music that feels enlivening through the drawn melodies and the simmering chords. This delicate pacing allows for Gonzalez’s voice to show that sexiness does not come in what you wear, but how you see yourself. There is a beauty to feeling beautiful, and when Gonzales sings with his smooth, straight toned voice, you feel beautiful. Suddenly, you see why people want affection so much; it makes you feel like you ARE music. You become a song for your lover to plays with his heart, and Gonzalez’s voice can make anyone want to play. Click Here For More Information On Cigarettes After Sex.