“Wednesdays, those are like weekends for you guys right?” mused Thad Cockrell, singer of Nashville’s Leagues, as Leagues’ set was about to begin. And to answer his question, I quote Girls’ Hannah Horvath, “It’s a Wednesday night baby, and I’m alive!” and alive Highline Ballroom was. The intimate venue was packed with eager fans who had been sitting on the floor in front of the stage for upwards of an hour before the show was to begin. (Now that’s dedication.) As the lights dimmed and the music kickstarted, the lively energy emanating from Leagues was infectious. With Cockrell’s all stage encompassing dancing and Leagues’ lush harmonies, it was hard not to smile when this Nashville four-some performs.
“Spotlight” off the band’s debut LP, You Belong Here, was especially memorable with its catchy chorus and noteworthy guitar lines, eliciting an instantaneous crowd clap-along. Three songs into Leagues’ set however, technical difficulties brought the show to a mini halt when singer Thad Cockrell’s microphone ceased to work. However the remaining members of the band kept the audience entertained with an instrumental medley while the stage hands worked to get things in order.
The momentary hiccup in Leagues’ set was merely a forgotten memory by the time their performance resumed because from there on, their rich brand of pop rock could do no wrong. “Everybody’s got a heart worth breaking, Everybody has someone that got away, Everybody has a love they’re looking for,” could be heard being sung amongst the audience during “Haunted,” whose infectious melody was no doubt stuck in everyone’s head. I have a bad habit of people watching and at a concert, that habit is magnified ten-fold. And those around me were simply enraptured by the sweet Southern charm of Leagues. I found myself watching the audience more than I did Leagues, because the spellbound looks could be seen throughout the crowd—and they have reason to! For a band with only one album under their belt, Leagues’ future looks bright.
LEAGUES is Tyler Burkum, Thad Cockrell, Jeremy Lutito.