Hearing people say “PVRIS is blowing up” is one of the biggest clichés in the music scene today. It’s been thrown around so much, but it’s so true. When the band released their debut album White Noise in 2014, they were immedietly thrusted into the spotlight with their dark, catchy, divergent tunes. In fact at the time, lead singer Lynn Gunn feared the band’s music “too out-of-the-box” and too unique. But sometime in the beginning, Pvris (pronounced Paris) embraced their creativity and rolled with it. Now with the release of their sophomore effort All We Know Of Heaven, All We Need Of Hell, we see just how far that approach has taken them.
Pvris has become a band that’s equally pleasing to the ear as they are to the eye, at least live. Their black and white aesthetic transforms their audible tones into a visual masterpiece.
Ominous audio rings in Pvris as bassist Brian MacDonald and guitarist Alex Babinksi stroll onto the the dark, dimly lit stage. Gunn follows, and sits down at the shadowy piano that rests in the middle of the stage. With one press of the keys, she begins to croon “Heaven,” the lead single from All We Know Of Heaven, All We Need Of Hell. “I think we were cursed from the start,” Gunn sings. It’s a soft start to show that’s destined to have a few raucous moments. “Second I let you into my heart,” she continues as her sleek blonde hair glistens under the three warm stage lights. She cracks a slight smile at her bandmates and rises from behind her piano to the microphone, where the crowd erupts.
Photos by Jared Allen
The Fillmore Charlotte is ignited once the upbeat part of “Heaven” kicks in and the liveliness flows into “St. Patrick.” While Pvris’ music pervades a dark emotion, there’s also a dance-worthy vibe strung through every track. Songs from White Noise and All We Know Of Heaven, All We Need Of Hell alternated throughout the night, and while each album sounds reasonably different, each hit seamlessly transition into the next.
Listening to Pvris with eyes closed is pleasing enough, but combined with the band’s aesthetic, their live show is elevated to another level. While some songs, such as “Fire” saw the three large LED boards transform into red flames, understandably so, other tracks were backed with a b&w lighting that created silhouettes out of Gunn and her bandmates. The contrast between the artist’s black attire and bright white light added a dreamy, yet dreary feel to the already dark music.
Although curfew creeped up on Pvris quicker than they had anticipated, forcing them to cut out three songs from the set, fans didn’t appear to care very much. A lull followed Gunn’s regrettable confession, but within the first tune of “What’s Wrong,” The Fillmore’s disappointment quickly turned to excitement once more. With a finale consisting of “Anyone Else,” “My House” and “No Mercy,” there really wasn’t anything to complain about. Although wishful thinking, it’s a reason for Pvris to come back to Charlotte on the next tour. Fingers crossed.