MAKO has been part of the music scene for some time though much more a staple for some more than others. Our Story is one of MAKO’s original hit songs before the duo separated and, no front man, Alex took the a new sound and tour on the road. I have been a MAKO fan since stumbling on the music a few years ago thanks to YouTube channels such as Proximity and like many artists had fears before seeing him live, would this sound hold up on a live stage?. To clarify, since going solo Alex has made a new sound with tracks like Breathe and also does a full band rather than strictly electronic performance when live. So, I had some cautiousness. Fortunately it was all for not and MAKO’s sound I am fully in support of and loving.
Before MAKO hit the stage though came Night Lights. Not Night Moves, not Night Riots, none of the above. I know, I had some confusion too and named a few songs to myself I thought were theirs too before seeing the show. All wrong and all completely different sounds than these guys. Night Lights had some awesome crowd interaction and stage presence I have to mention first. I usually think of openers as the warm up, which kudos to Night Lights for joking on them doing just that, and so when openers come on I just hope for a steady rise in energy and not anything to make the crowd stale. Night Lights has a ton of energy and for the Entry having the small stage it does they sure found a lot of space to jump around and dance. Well done guys, I’m impressed. Though the band did remove it’s older music from Spotify, which they’re giving away at shows, you can hear their latest track Childish on Spotify. Highly recommend for a good vibe on their sound and a fun jam.
After a sufficient amount of time allowed for the stage to fill with as much smoke as possible MAKO arrived on stage. And immediately joked about how they felt like upping their stage vapor game to the next level. This night was full of comics, touche MAKO. Surprise number one on the night, MAKO front man Alex has some solid crowd and stage presence. Now that may sound like a no brainer but when you are a DJ type I half worry you’ll be the type to simply play your tracks and jump up and down without any real interaction. MAKO doesn’t do this, at all. Alex and his band are conversational and full of humor between tracks while also providing live vocals on all tracks. Once again, stage real estate being at a premium MAKO just like Night Lights managed to make use of what they had and danced anywhere possible through their set.
Second surprise, the tracks we MAKO fans know such as Smoke Filled Room and Our Story are NOT the same live. But they take new life and are awesome in their own way. Particularly Our Story, I felt like the use of a full band over purely electronic sounds was done without any issue. I love the original but the song admittedly translates to an indie alt rock sound extremely well and the crowd definitely was sold on it as well. The track I honestly had not heard until the night of the show and grew on me afterward though, Legends Never Die. The funny thing about this one was Alex’s introduction to it. The song was made for League of Legends, which most games know of, but Alex himself said he found himself in awe of how big the game is and it’s following. That following will no doubt not hurt his cause in the slightest, it’s a solid song and fits perfectly as a video game track.
So, I finally saw MAKO after years of YouTube listening and patiently waiting. Conclusion, I wanna see him again but at a bigger venue. The timing with the Super Bowl and everything was less than ideal and hurt attention for the show but both of the bands playing could have easily packed a thousand people. I also would have to recommend people check out not just MAKO’s new sound but give Night Lights a bit of love. They’re not brand new but still grinding and have a fun energy to them that people should enjoy at any show.