The Struts Do It So Well In Concert

When you combine a stellar setlist, breathtaking stage presence, and phenomenal talent you get an incredible live performance by The Struts. Over the summer I saw the band live at the House of Blues in Boston and I can honestly say that it was one of the best shows I’ve ever been to. Despite the band only having two full length albums, they played a full set of 17 songs (including one four-song medley) that lasted for over an hour and a half. The Struts, unlike many other touring artists, make subtle but noticeable changes to their setlist on each night of the tour instead of keeping a static setlist for its entirety. They also do a great job of creating setlists that mix hits and more underrated songs in order to satisfy all kinds of fans. 

The Struts do more than just play their songs, though. This concert was one of the most engaging, crowd-focussed shows I have ever seen. In the style of Queen, from whom the band pulls a good deal of their inspiration, lead singer Luke Spiller engaged the audience in call-and-response yelling and singing throughout the show. The band also took time to “induct” first-time concert goers into The Struts’ family as well as celebrate returning fans through their signature ritual by instructing everyone to crouch down on the floor and wait until the beat dropped to jump up all at once and dance together. Before they performed their cover of “Dancing in the Street,” Spiller asked fans to turn to someone they did not know and ask them to dance. Additionally, The Struts performed one of their songs completely acoustic, with only vocals and acoustic guitar present, allowing the crowd to sing an entire verse on their own. Throughout the entire concert, there was a personal connection between the crowd and the band which made it all the more memorable and enjoyable.

The band was incredibly energetic and clearly excited to be on stage performing. Interacting with each other, dancing across the stage, and leaning out over the audience, the band made sure there were no dull moments during the show. Even more impressive is the fact that the members’ talents were still distinctly showcased while keeping the high energy in tact. There is always a tinge of fear that plagues me when I prepare to see a band for the first time live, wondering if the band will sound as good without the help of producers and technology. However, the differences between the recorded and live versions of The Struts’ songs were strictly stylistic, with the vocals and instrumentation on each sound sounding identical to their produced, album version counterpart. 

In addition to the aspects of the show that would have made it an incredible experience from any seat in the venue, I was also lucky enough to find myself extremely close to the stage. When I got in line a half an hour before doors opened I was not expecting to end up a mere four rows from the barrier. For whatever reason, luck was on my side and I was able to have an exceptional experience with a clear, close view of the stage. In addition to a playlist containing all of my favorite The Struts songs, an infectiously energetic performance, and mind-blowing talent, there were also small touches that made the show great. The two opening bands were very similar in genre, which made it interesting to listen to them even though I had not previously heard any of their music. In fact, one of the bands is now a new favorite of mine (find them on Spotify, YouTube, and Apple Music as BONES UK)! There was also a lovely stage set up, with an elevated drumset and intricate backdrop. My only regret regarding the show is that I didn’t think to bring earplugs, as the band fully embraced their classic rock roots and blasted their sound through the speakers. 

If I ever have the chance to see The Struts live again, I will take the opportunity without a second thought. It has been over a month since I saw them live and I still think about my experience frequently as it has become one of my favorite memories. The Struts sure do know how to put on a show and create one-of-a-kind, memorable nights. Be sure to listen to The Struts on Spotify, YouTube, and Apple Music! You can also read my other article reviewing their two albums here

If you would like to write for Her Campus Mount Holyoke, or if you have any questions or comments for us, please email [email protected].