No, it’s not just a phase – Moontalk plays Whelan’s upstairs

Diana Stokes recalls the January performance of Trinity band Moontalk

On a clear and calm night at the end of January, there was music to be heard: a rare single band gig in Whelan’s upstairs! Moontalk, one of our very own local Trinity bands, took the stage by storm with a range of music both new and familiar. From chill acoustic pieces to country rock and even some experimental songs, Moontalk has a little something for everyone. 

The night started with guitarist and keyboardist Alessandro Loro playing a couple of acoustic guitar songs by himself – his technique was nothing short of insane! After these, lead singer Jack Walsh joined Alessandro on stage for an original song, Maria, and a cover of Still Beating by Mac DeMarco. Both were very well done, and certainly set the tone for the rest of the night!

The first few songs of the night flitted back and forth between country and Americana-style rock, solid pieces across the board! But the first huge hit came in the form of the fifth song of the set, Paint Your Lips. The crowd certainly went wild for this one. With almost RNB, funk-styled chords à la Sade, and catchy lyrics to boot, Moontalk had the audience swaying and grooving like there was no tomorrow!  

Next up on notable songs, these came in the forms of the eighth and ninth songs: Now You’ve Gone and [insert 9th here]. Now You’ve Gone was another crowd favourite with some serious country-folksy energy. Everyone was singing either to each other or back to the stage! The energy that was being produced in the room was electrifying, and despite the countless gigs I’ve been to, there haven’t been many moments where the whole room was singing the chorus in absolute unity, as happened during this song! The spark certainly continued with [ack], the indie pop pick-me-up that I had been craving throughout the night! It was an absolute banger of a song, with a special shoutout to the drummer Kevin Huang-Wu; Kevin has an exciting talent for the drums beyond comprehension and it was at this point during the set that a couple people in the crowd began cheering on Kevin specifically!  

The final songs I want to mention were some of the last of the night. [13th] and [14th] were some of the more unique entries. [13th] began with pre-recorded rain sounds which slowly faded into an orchestral backing track, before again transitioning into Alessandro’s keyboard and Jack’s singing. The rest of the song ended up being a rock ballad akin to Jeff Buckley, overall creating an ephemeral spell of calm passion over the stage. [14th] then switched the genre from ballad to rock; with synth in the beginning that sounded like Pink Floyd and transitioned into an upbeat near-metal sound paired with a strong bassline from Chris May, it was the perfect penultimate song for their set – and Kevin got another outstanding drum solo much to the audience’s delight!  

Moontalk was nothing short of amazing. You can follow the band via their Instagram page, @itsmoontalk!