Summer Salt @ The Echo Lounge, 07/07/23

In the spring of 2020, I was set to go see Summer Salt for the first time. But we all know what prevented me from seeing them live. I then had more to worry about than missing the chance to see the Austin-based band. Fast forward three years later and now, I had the chance to cover them live at The Echo Lounge.

Addison Grace and The Rare Occasions both opened for Summer Salt, setting the tone for the band. Grace played a few songs from his first EP Immaturing including the single “I Wanna Be a Boy” receiving love and adoration from the crowd as he expressed his journey in finding himself. There was genuine appreciation from the singer; you could see how much joy they had in touring with Summer Salt.

The Rare Occasions was such a fun band to cover. Their music electrified the audience causing the pit to jump to the lively beat. The indie-rock band has been in the game for a while but experienced astounding success with their single “Notion.” The Rare Occasions are the type of band to get any crowd going even if the members of the audience aren’t avid fans. Immediately when they began the ska-esque intro to their song “Backwards,” the ears of the audience perked up. Their energy spread through the venue giving Summer Salt an already excited audience.

The audience, brought to life by the openers, was ready for Summer Salt. The band’s set list varied between their 4 albums. The second track on the list, “Candy Wrappers” was a surprise for longtime fans and the band continued with these surprises digging deep into their discography. Summer Salt had amazing engagement with the crowd. I loved when they conducted a roar of “Yeehaw” from their fellow Texans and got everyone to chant Chick Hicks’s, from Cars, slogan “Ka-chicka, ka-chicka!” As the band members introduced themselves, each musician spoke about their Dallas roots. What surprised me the most was finding out that the main duo, Eugene and Terry, were from Richardson! The crowd brightened as they spoke about their home city. They ended their set with the title track from their last album Campanita. Before the concert, I spent some time listening and researching their latest LP to catch myself up. Campanita is a deeply personal project about family and loss; seeing the audience engaged with songs from the album, including Eugene’s son’s favorite track “Tortilla Soup,” made the concert much more touching.

As the band walked off stage, the crowd demanded more. Summer Salt performed two more songs, including “Revvin’ My CJ7” which was intensely requested by the fans. This has definitely been one of my favorite concerts to not only cover, but to have attended. Fans were jumping, dancing, and swaying to the “choral reef rock” (as stated in their Instagram bio.) This concert re-sparked my love for the band, and I encourage everyone to see them live if you can!