Phoenix blows away sold-out crowd at the Marquee

The guys from Phoenix really likes their new song “Entertainment.”

The crowd enjoyed hearing the new single so much that it was a focus of the first and last notes at its concert Monday at the Marquee Theatre in Tempe. The French quartet played to a sold-out crowd in support of its upcoming album, “Bankrupt!”

After brave early-birds weathered the high winds and slight rain on the uncharacteristically cool evening, Canadian rocker Mac DeMarco opened the evening with his own unique style.

Although his home could not be more contrast to California, his slackerish surf rock came across with leisure and pop.

Promoting his fittingly-titled sophomore album “2,” DeMarco showed genuineness and bluntness throughout his set, playing like the audience was friends at a crowded house party.

The only downside to his performance was the unfortunate flow of incomers taking attention away from the stage.

Shortly after 9 p.m., the house lights dimmed and Phoenix took to the stage.

As the music began, the crowd cheered and simultaneously raised their cell phones in the air.

Although frontman Thomas Mars encouraged vocals from the audience, the amount of suspended screens and disrespectful flashes proved to be a distraction for both the crowd and the band.

The band continued for a string of songs off of its popular 2009 album “Wolfgang Amaedeus Phoenix.”

It then played the lengthy “Love Like A Sunset” after a handful of songs.

Phoenix’s ability to captivate an audience truly shined during this two-parted track, mesmerizing the crowd with and without Mars on the stage. Each instrument and musician found a way to shine throughout the 10 minutes of the rendition, which was one of the set’s highlights.

After playing some songs off of its forthcoming release, the band performed the crowd-pleasing “1901″ and left the stage.

Not two minutes later, Mars returned with only guitarist Christian Mazzalai for a minimalist rendition of “Countdown (Sick for the Big Sun).”

Mars headed out to the crowd to sing among the audience, staring into more iPhone cameras than eyes.

Laurent Brancowitz (guitar/keys), Deck d’Arcy (bass) and the two instrumentalists returned for a total of three more songs to finish out the four-song encore.

Mars finished the closing number “Rome” by trekking out to the depths of the crowd and thanking the crowd for their attendance and support.

But just when everyone planned for the last note, the instrumentals fired back up to conclude with the jubilant chorus and hook of “Entertainment.”

Phoenix blew away a packed venue of wind-refugees on Monday night for over an hour with its trademark sound played at maximum volume.

The visuals did not disappoint either, providing a transition between projected images, static and a variety of flashing fluorescent colors. Either way, no one in attendance was at risk of growing bored.


Reach the reporter at mitchell.bobman@asu.edu