Arlo Parks Amazes Boston

// Image courtesy of Brenda Ceja.

Fresh off the heels of winning the Mercury Prize for Album of the Year earlier this month, Arlo Parks embarked on her completely sold-out U.S. headlining tour. This past Saturday, September 25th, I had the joy of experiencing The Collapsed in Sunbeams Tour at Brighton Music Hall. Although this was Arlo Parks’ first night ever in Boston, she was welcomed with open arms and loud cheers. When the crowd spotted Parks running into the green room in between the openers Frances Baker and MICHELLE, the audience erupted with a roar of excitement.

// Image courtesy of Brenda Ceja.

The show first began with a surprise opening set from Frances Baker. The Boston-based singer and producer shared that Parks discovered her music “through a friend of a friend of a friend” and had personally requested Baker open for her Boston stop on tour. Baker sang accompanying tracks played from her laptop. For being the sole person on stage, she definitely captivated the room. In addition to playing her debut single, “Bringing Me Down,” Frances Baker also treated the crowd to some unreleased music as well.

// Image courtesy of Brenda Ceja.

In a fun contrast, the next opener MICHELLE had six members performing on stage. The sextet showed off their individual personalities through their unique outfits. They also demonstrated their cohesion as a group through their rehearsed choreography. I was completely surprised by MICHELLE’s whopping four lead singers, all with beautiful voices. The crowd definitely did their homework and sang along to many songs, especially singing loudly for the band’s 2020 single, “SUNRISE.”

// Image courtesy of Brenda Ceja.

You could definitely feel the excitement in the air as the audience waited for Arlo Parks to take the stage after her two lively openers. Once Parks ran out of the green room, the energy in the venue immediately shifted to pure joy. Everyone in the crowd eagerly sang along to the first two songs, her lead singles “Hurt” and “Green Eyes.” To no surprise, they continued singing through the following album cuts from Collapsed in Sunbeams, “Porta 400,” “Romantic Garbage,” and “Too Good.”

// Image courtesy of Brenda Ceja.

“Caroline” was my personal stand-out track of the night. Arlo Parks explained to the crowd. “We are having a competition on tour to see which city can sing the loudest ‘Caroline’.” She then directed different sections of the crowd to echo her singing of “CAROLINE!” Despite Boston following her recent sold-out show in New York City, Parks was still very impressed by the audience’s volume, stating that Boston is definitely a “contender” for the title!

// Image courtesy of Brenda Ceja.

The show then took a softer turn, with Arlo Parks reading the poem, “Collapsed in Sunbeams” from her journal. Her beautiful reading held the audience in awe. Next, Parks performed “Eugene” followed by a number of slower songs: “Black Dog,” “Sophie,” and “Super Sad Generation.” The encore song was the inspiring “Hope,” paired with Parks taking a photo with the energetic crowd.

// Brenda Ceja ‘23 aka BABY B LUV is a Staff Writer and DJ for The Darker Side. When they aren’t rambling about how much they love WHRB, they are playing old-school House, Hip-Hop, and Soul on the air.