Tash Sultana•Chiiild•September 1, 2023•Sandy Amphitheater
Reviewed and Photographed by Justin Lagman
Summer is coming to a close and what better way to head into Labor Day weekend than attending a concert at what I would consider an extremely underrated venue in Utah? Sandy Amphitheater was glowing and the beautiful crowd arrived early to fill out the lawn area and enjoy the beautiful summer night.
Tash Sultana’s growth in mainstream culture has risen quite high in recent years, but those who have been following the artist in their early years know that they are quite the live performer. It’s truly amazing to know that they’ve included Salt Lake City as one of their tour stops because there’s truly a huge amount of people here who have been long-time fans.
As the sun began to set over the majestic Utah mountains, the atmosphere was charged with anticipation. The audience, bundled up in their jackets, eagerly awaited the Canadian R&B and soul group’s performance. The venue’s natural acoustics and intimate setting made it the perfect backdrop for Chiiild’s unique sound.
Chiiild, known for their genre-blurring music and emotionally charged lyrics, opened the show with an electrifying presence that immediately captured the audience’s attention. Lead singer and songwriter, Yonatan Ayal, possessed a remarkable ability to convey raw emotion through his velvety voice and soul-wrenching lyricism. Yonatan was backed up by an amazing drummer, guitar player, and a violinist who also did some backup vocals. The band’s energy was youthful and connected very well with the younger concertgoers.
The standout moments for me was Chiiild’s newest hits like “Weightless” and “Awake” The vulnerability in Ayal’s voice, combined with the lo-fi-esque beats, left the audience in a mesmerized silence before erupting into applause. It was a powerful moment that showcased the depth of the band’s songwriting and their ability to connect with their audience on a profound level.
Chiiild’s stage presence was strong and captivating. The band members moved with effortless grace, allowing the music to take center stage. A backdrop of mesmerizing visuals and lighting design added an extra layer of depth to their performance, creating an immersive experience for everyone in attendance.
As an artist that was very new to this crowd, Chiiild’s opening act definitely gained themselves new fans. Their soulful, genre-defying sound and emotionally charged lyrics left a lasting impression on the audience. Chiiild proved themselves to be a rising star in the music industry, and their performance set the perfect tone for what promised to be an unforgettable night of music. This Canadian group left their mark on Utah, and fans eagerly await their return to the stage.
The sun has gone down and the temperature has also reached a cool breeze. The crowd stayed warm and had to get another round of drinks with their friends. As soon as the lights shut off, the crowd rose to their feet and the cheers were so loud for the much awaited Tash Sultana.
Tash Sultana emerged on stage and immediately started looping their instruments one by one. The audience erupted with excitement as the opening chords of “Mystik” reverberated through the amphitheater, setting the tone for an evening of musical magic. Sultana’s mastery of their instruments was nothing short of astounding. Their guitar skills were on full display as they effortlessly looped layers of intricate melodies and rhythms, creating a sonic tapestry that filled every nook and cranny of the venue. It was a one-person symphony, a testament to Sultana’s remarkable talent and unparalleled connection with their instruments. It was amazing to see them mix her solo work and also recently incorporating a band on her tour.
Tash has been one of my personal favorites so seeing these songs performed live was a magical experience. Tash’s vocals were equally captivating, ranging from soulful and tender to powerful and raw. Each song was delivered with such emotion that it felt like a deeply personal conversation with the audience. “Pretty Lady” “Greed,” and “Jungle” were standouts for the whole crowd and everyone knew the lyrics to these classic Tash Sultana songs.
They have recently released a brand new E.P. titled “Sugar EP. It had different energy from her previous work, bringing in a lighter and joyful energy. They did play one of the hits from the album titled “New York,” and it was fascinating to see the crowd already having the lyrics memorized and singing along. You could definitely tell Tash was in awe of the beautiful Utah crowd.
What truly set this performance apart, however, was the sense of intimacy and vulnerability that Sultana shared with the audience. Between songs, they spoke candidly about their journey as a musician and the profound meaning behind their lyrics. It was evident that every note played and every word sung came from a place of genuine passion and authenticity. The visual elements of the concert were equally stunning, with a mesmerizing light show that enhanced the emotional depth of each song and truly highlighted their instrument skill and knowledge.
The night reached its pinnacle with the performance of “Notion,” during which Sultana’s guitar solos soared to incredible heights, leaving the audience in a state of euphoria. As Tash closed the show with “Blackbird,” an intimate and heartfelt ballad, there was a sense of unity and connection among everyone in attendance.
In a world where live music is a cherished treasure, Tash Sultana’s performance tonight felt like a gift to the soul. Their ability to craft an immersive, transformative experience is a testament to their extraordinary talent and genuine passion for music. It was a night that will undoubtedly linger in the hearts of all fortunate enough to be present, a reminder of the transcendent power of live music.