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The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Dreamers and Robert Delong begin “Dodging Sunshine” tour in Roseville

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Dreamers’ Nick Wold performs with drummer Jessica Goodwin at the Goldfield Trading Post in Roseville on May 12, 2023. Photo credit: Emma Richman / [email protected].

Inside the quiet bar at Roseville’s Goldfield Trading Post, the muted brown tones and eclectic western decor that litter the walls would soon be invaded by bright, flashing neon lights, pouring over a crowd of people excitedly anticipating a stellar rock performance.

By 8 p.m., a near sold-out venue was bustling in anticipation to witness the collaboration of alternative rock band Dreamers with electronic artist Robert Delong.

The show began with opener Carr, also known as Carly McClellan, who delivered pop and punk-inspired music with witty lyrics and a bubbly attitude. As she danced across the stage during her set, Carr sang about the frustrations and joys of love and sexuality in a refreshing way. One downside to the performance were the drums, which although played well, tended to drown out her vocals due to harsh acoustics in the venue.

Carly McClellan of Carr performs with Michael Edwards (right) and Dylan Buzz Gold (behind) at the Goldfield Trading Post in Roseville on May 12, 2023. Photo credit: Emma Richman / [email protected]

After the 30 minute performance, the crowd eagerly awaited the appearance of Dreamers, the first of two main acts of the night. One concert-goer expressed her excitement in coming to their show. She had followed them across the country on their last tour, feeling a dedication to come to all of their shows claiming they helped her through many “tumultuous” times back in college.

As a longtime fan, she recognized that an old blue guitar propped up on center stage was, in fact, the same guitar used by the lead singer since he first started performing with the band.

At 8:30 p.m., Dreamers’ singer Nick Wold, entered alongside bassist Marc Nelson, drummer Jessica Goodwin, and guitarist Ari Tibi to a delighted crowd. Fans quickly spotted Wold’s standout blue hair had been dyed an equally loud red for the tour.

The band performed many of their genre-bending hits as they flowed through alternative rock and into grunge territory. All of the members brought an energy that rivaled the intensity of the neon lights flashing overhead and Wold especially was expressive and engaging. While playing on a guitar with wires and duct tape attached, Wold displayed his talents with moody, gravelly vocals on their song “Screws,” while belting out pop-inspired high notes on “Sweet Disaster.”

A standout aspect of both main performances was the dedication to an interesting atmosphere through backdrops that frequently changed according to the themes of the music. Dreamers’ set utilized trippy psychedelic art, eclectic robots and space imagery with neon designs reminiscent of the 80’s. The images created a surreal, reality-bending effect, mixing nostalgia of the past with futuristic themes.

As the set began to transition into Robert Delong’s set, Wold announced their collaboration on a new single, “Dodging Sunshine.” He described the song is about getting drunk with the people you love, saying “Sometimes it feels good to fall apart.”

Dreamers’ Nick Wold (right) performs “Dodging Sunshine” alongside Robert Delong (left) at the Goldfield Trading Post in Roseville on May 12, 2023. Photo credit: Emma Richman / [email protected].

By 9:30 p.m., Delong, described on Spotify as “Alt-electro alchemist,” entered. This segment of the show got off to a rocky start due to difficulties in setting up with some fans of the previous act leaving as a result. Those who stuck around found an experience worthwhile as many super fans piled into the front row during his portion of the set. 

As an electronic artist, Delong brought a wide collection of gear to produce his unique and experimental sound. Throughout his set, Delong entertained the audience by singing and operating a synthesizer (which produced various audio effects similar to autotune). He also used video game equipment such as keypads, levers and even lasers, all while banging on drums and playing the keyboard.

Delong lit up the room with an energy that never faltered and his stage presence and humor were felt during and in between songs as he frequently bantered with the audience.

The performance wonderfully showcased Delong’s talents in many different musical techniques, which all combined to produce a fresh spin on electronic dance music that kept the audience up and energized beyond 11 p.m..

Robert Delong performs with backup drummer at the Goldfield Trading Post in Roseville on May 12, 2023. Photo credit: Emma Richman / [email protected]

At the end of the set, Delong welcomed back Wold to perform their unreleased song together onstage for the first time. Both artists are originally from Seattle and although their musical styles are distinct, Wold and Delong managed to combine elements from both to create a unique and interesting sound.

Making an effort to collaborate while advertising on each other’s social media, with short performance videos and skits of their time on tour, it was clear their stage chemistry was a reflection of a real friendship on and offstage. 

Drawing in fans of alternative and electronic music alike, Dreamers and Delong hooked the audience in with their outstanding talent and collaborative performance and I’d recommend the show to anyone looking for new music to dive into.

Delong ended the show with a nod to the futuristic elements of the show, as trippy echoes faded out and lights dimmed, saying: “I’ll see you guys again…in the future.”

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