All night I felt like Tony Hello, the lead singer of Eyes Lips Eyes, reminded me of someone, but I couldn’t figure out who. Then I figured it out: he dresses like a younger version of Willy Wonka with longer hair and no top hat. Hello was about as crazy on stage as Wonka is about candy; he danced and thrashed around tirelessly throughout his performance––it was enthralling. Before Eyes Lips Eyes even began setting up, girls and boys were yelling and oohing at each other, and I felt like they were in on something I wasn’t. I figured out during the first song that they were imitating Hello’s dramatic mannerisms. I’ve never seen a person––or a band, for that matter––with as much stage presence as Hello has with Eyes Lips Eyes. As a result, every song had the blasting intensity of a band that clearly puts everything into their performance and loves every second of it. Their music is reminiscent of many post-punk revival bands of the 2000s, like Arctic Monkeys, The Strokes and particularly the dance-punk style of The Rapture. Throughout their set, people were tripping over themselves and each other to try to dance as fast as the guitar riffs in those songs. Everyone proved that to be impossible during their encore, “Tickle,” except for the guy who was frantically sprinting from wall to wall toward the back of the venue. When Hello introduced “Tickle,” he simply said, “The name of this song is ...” and everyone screamed once they heard the riff that sounds like a baby being tickled.
If you’ve never heard about all the music coming out of Provo, this show was a pretty good introduction; it had a rap duo many people probably wouldn’t expect to come from Provo, a pretty new band that needs a little polishing, an older band that had a huge following a few years ago, and a band that moved out of Provo, but still comes back to visit.