Vacationer’s inaugural Nude Beach party transports Underground Arts out of snowy February (photos, review)

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The aftermath of a snowstorm wasn’t enough to kill the summer vibe at the first Nude Beach party Saturday night at Underground Arts. These new monthly “chill parties” were started by Philly-based band Vacationer, whose dreamy brand of electro pop made it perfectly acceptable for a few concertgoers to wear Hawaiian-style shirts and flowered leis in the middle of February.

Free Sailor Jerry rum drinks flowed and a makeshift volleyball court did not go unused before fellow warm-weather-inspired Philly band Cruiser opened the party. After their smooth set, out-of-town DJ Robert DeLong pumped up the crowd with energetic beats and a set that showcased his multi-instrumental talents, blending live drums and keys into his electronic tracks. These openers one can assume were hand-picked by Vacationer fulfilled the band’s desire for these monthly parties to showcase both Philly local and emerging EDM artists.

Vacationer has always kept their hometown audience in mind, and the Nude Beach show proved a proper homecoming for the band and frontman Kenny Vasoli after touring extensively with Niki and the Dove since the New Year. Playing through favorites off their debut album Gone, Vasoli also gave hints about the band’s new music, promising more shoegaze on their next record.

Beach balls released a near the end of Vacationer’s set quickly became coated with the mixture of dirt and water tracked into the venue from the still snowy ground outside, and served as a reminder that it was in fact February, not July. But for a band that prides itself on making music that affords listeners an instant vacation from their everyday woes, the monthly Nude Beach parties should serve as a great way for Philly music lovers to take this trip together.

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