Los Angeles is notorious for music venues and bars closing down and opening up. The Moroccan Lounge is one of LA’s newest promising music venues to open. If you are an LA native or have been here for the past 6 years, you may remember the bar as the One Eyed Gypsy. Most known for the popular party Lil Death.
The Moroccan Lounge is part of the Teregram Ballroom family. Knowing that, it had a lot to live up to. When walking in to the venue for the first time to catch Grizzly Bears intimate set, I was instantly amazed. They have you go in to this small bar where the doors to the showroom greet you at the very back.
Being a venue that only holds about 300 people, things moved a bit differently. Rather than having opening bands, they kept the doors closed keeping everyone in the main bar. This forced people to interact with each other in an intimate setting. Because of this I met a man who had seen Grizzly Bear almost every time they played LA as well as a man who came all the way from Texas to see them play. There was a DJ to keep the mood going, however, the songs played were of the Drake variety.
As soon as the doors opened, the crowd flooded into the tiny show room. At this point, you would think the show was just about to begin, but nope! To build more anticipation, they waited about another hour before going on. At this point, all 300 fans knew each other and their family history.
Grizzly Bear finally took the stage. A nice bonus to having no openers is being able to play an extended set. Grizzly Bear played for a good hour and a half or so. Their set consisted of mostly stuff from their new album. The band opened up their set with two tracks off their new album “Painted Ruins”. The crowd were huge diehards because they already knew the lyrics to Four Cypresses and Losing All Senses. From there, they bounced around with an old song peppered in after every other song from the new album.
Eventually, the set got to “Two Weeks”, Grizzly Bears most popular song. At this point, the crowd was singing along and dancing. With a show like this, you can really tell who the die-hard fans were. Although they didn’t play “The Knife”, we’re excited to see them again at a festival setting or another performance.
Aside from Grizzly Bear’s epic set, the venue played a lot into this amazing show. The sound was impeccable, which is expected from a Teregram venue. Continuing with the Teregram’s reputation comes amazing lighting. Being a photographer, I judge a lot about a venue based off their lighting. Overall, The Moroccan Lounge gives off an amazing atmosphere when it comes to small intimate showcases. Picking Grizzly Bear for a relatively new venue and a return for a critically acclaimed indie band after a multi year hiatus was an incredibly smart and welcome move. We look forward to more amazing performances at the Moroccan, and more stellar performances from Grizzly Bear.