Guster Debuts 'Ooh La La' at a sold-out Free at Noon - WXPN | Vinyl At Heart

Guster debuted their first LP in five years, Ooh La La, to a sold-out audience at World Cafe Live for this week’s Free at Noon. Opening with “Keep Going,” the inspiration for the title, this stop on the “We Also Have Eras” tour was a fantastic showcase of Guster’s discography.

An alt-rock band from Somerville, MA, founding members Adam Gardner, Ryan Miller, and Brian Rosenworcel all met at Tufts University in 1991. They stayed relatively local until the 1999 release of their third studio album, Lost and Gone Forever, put them on the map. They added Luke Reynolds in 2010 after Joe Pisapia announced he’d be touring with k.d. Lang. The band also co-founded REVERB, a nonprofit dedicated to reducing the climate impact of touring. After releasing 2019’s Look Alive, the group has been on tour since 2023 and their recent Somerville Porchfest appearance drew hundreds.

“We’ve played this song before with the Colorado Symphony at Red Rocks, but this might be the debut without the orchestra,” Miller said. “It’s the first time we’ve ever played this song – kinda. Air quotes.”

“Witness Tree” was fantastic, with thumping percussion and solid vocals. A soulful rendition of “Hang On” and “Keep It Together” brought a moody yet hopeful vibe to the stage.

The show wasn’t without a few minor mishaps, but Miller gave Guster’s crew a big thank-you for dealing with technical difficulties yesterday morning – “I went to bed with about 25 texts about [our] truck being broken… and I magically woke up and everything was okay!”

After a few more songs from the album, Guster played their biggest hit, “Satellite.” The title track of their 2007 LP, “Satellite” was featured in the 2007 film Martian Child and earned the band a gold record in 2018. At World Cafe Life, the iconic track included a great guitar solo and lots of head-bopping from the sardine-can crowd.

“[This final song] really distills the essence of what we’re trying to convey,” Miller said. “We’re just overwhelmed with a tremendous amount of gratitude that we get to do this.”

They ended the set with an inspiring rendition of “This All Could Be Yours,” from 2010’s Easy Wonderful. Throwing his arms open for the chorus, Miller encouraged the crows to sing along. Brian Rosenworcel clashed hand held cymbals with the drumset, and Miller playfully placed down the mic stand and kicked it around, in a parody of destructive rock and roll moves.

The audience loved it. Shoutout to the Penn Class of 1974 for spending their 50th anniversary at XPN and to the winners of our new member drive giveaway! Become a member here. Listen to Ooh La La here or watch the Free at Noon’s webcast here. More information on Guster’s “We Also Have Eras” tour here. Learn more about Guster’s environmental impact here.

Free At Noon
  • Keep Going
  • Stay With Me Jesus
  • Witness Tree
  • Hang On
  • Keep It Together
  • Black Balloon
  • Satellite
  • This Could All Be Yours
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