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Daughter @ The Wiltern 12/30/16. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.
Daughter @ The Wiltern 12/30/16. Photo by Derrick K. Lee, Esq. (@Methodman13) for www.BlurredCulture.com.

There’s is a somber beauty in Daughter’s music. With a penchant for delving deep into relentlessly heavy subject matter, their music will pull on your heart strings until it sheds a tear of blood. Their sophomore album, released January 2016, is another intimate look at the way the band contemplates topics like dementia, loss and loneliness, but is majestically conveyed in a sonic wash of indie electronic shoegaze that gives the lyrical content a beautiful texture that almost makes you forget just how sad their music is.

The audience at The Wiltern was ready for the experience. In fact, a great number of those that I spoke to prior to the show had seen them several years ago when they had played the storied venue in support of their debut album. They knew what to expect, and they were ready to soak it all in.

With Elena Tonra upstage, stage right and Igor Haefeli upstage, stage right, with Remi Aguillela and Cathy (their multi-instrumentalist) downstage, the band was a well-oiled machine playing a flawless set that was only interrupted on a handful occasions when Elena addressed the crowd to shyly express her gratitude for the audience being so attentive and engaged. There was no need for any more than those brief conversational moments as the audience was entranced by words being sung by Ms. Tonra.

The Wiltern’s stage production enhanced Daughter’s performance, with beams of light pulsing into the audience while at the same time dimly lighting Ms. Tonra as she sang, maintaining the mysterious and forlorn mood set by the music. Audience chatter was hardly noticeable as I wandered the venue, noting that the audience was fully attentive on each and every song. As I scanned the audience, I caught many fans singing along (most were just mouthing the lyrics, almost as if they were showing an  emotional solidarity), some people were in fact shedding a tear, but everybody was engaged on the musical journey of beauty and sadness.

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