November 9, 2021 at Paradise Rock Club
Beach Bunny, a band that finds its sound somewhere in the intersection between pop, indie, and rock, spent the longest leg of their Honeymoon tour in Boston, playing two shows in two days at Paradise Rock Club. Attending their second show at the same venue on November 9, I was expecting a lighter crowd and a more mellow atmosphere. Entering the venue before the opener, Miloe, had even gone on, I was immediately greeted with a packed, energetic crowd, and I knew my previous assumptions were wrong.
I set to work making my way to the front, both to stake out a photo spot and to get a feel for the crowd. This was a difficult task in a venue as packed as Paradise was, a testament to the huge, loyal fanbase that Beach Bunny has, particularly when considering that this was their second show in Boston. Nevertheless, I made my way to the front. Aside from one middle-aged man who was very angry about people bumping into him in the pit, the crowd, gathered in anticipation of Beach Bunny’s performance, was overwhelmingly young and overwhelmingly excited to be there. The demographics of this crowd were no surprise, considering the many Beach Bunny songs that have gone viral on TikTok and their relatable anthems of teen girlhood.
In fact, relatability seemed to be an overarching theme of the show. After an electric set from Miloe to warm up the audience, Beach Bunny’s four members waltzed on stage towards a screaming crowd. They were just about to start their first song when lead singer Lili Trifilio stopped them short. She announced she was having issues with her in-ear monitor, a small, earbud-like device that allows performers to hear themselves playing. The crowd laughed with her as she joked about the mishap, which resonated with me as an incredibly human moment that you don’t often get to experience when seeing a famous musician. This moment transitioned perfectly into their opening song “Prom Queen”, which has almost 170 million streams on Spotify. An upbeat rock song about insecurity and beauty standards, “Prom Queen”’s lyrics resonated throughout the venue as fans sang along. “You should lower your expectations,” many yelled rather than sang, and it was clear how deeply Beach Bunny’s lyrics connect with their fans.
Trifilio also stood out as an incredibly interactive performer. Towards the beginning of the set, she asked around to see if it was anyone’s birthday, then after finding someone on their lucky day, she began a rendition of “Happy Birthday” with the whole crowd. In between songs, she often would make everyday conversation with the audience as if she were just talking with one person, again, connecting with her fans on a more human level. She encouraged everyone to move, to sing along with her, and at one point she asked the whole audience to squat down, a near-impossible task in the large, packed crowd, but her fans obliged, jumping to their feet as the energy of their song peaked.
Unassuming in her loose jeans, cropped t-shirt, and minimal makeup, Beach Bunny’s Lili Trifilio does not look like your typical lead singer of a rock band. However, I’ve concluded that this is the reason for her die-hard fans, some of whom came to both Boston shows. Trifilio is the most relatable, most adorably human performer I have ever seen live, and her smile alone as she interacted with her fans was enough to make the dimly lit venue shine.