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The Dartmouth
April 20, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Review: Headliners Neon Trees and Cochise Offer Vastly Different Styles

Celine Choi ’26 reviews Green Key Headliners Neon Trees and Cochise’s respective discographies in preparation for Friday’s long-awaited concert.

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On May 19 at 7 p.m., the long-awaited Green Key concert will take place on Gold Coast Lawn featuring Neon Trees and Cochise. Neon Trees, with their infectious pop-rock sound and powerful vocals, has been a staple of the alternative music scene for over a decade, while Cochise’s blend of trap and Reggae pushes the boundaries of modern rap music. 

Neon Trees — known for their high-energy performances and catchy pop hooks — is an American alternative rock band, formed in Provo, Utah in 2005. The band consists of vocalist Tyler Glenn, guitarist Chris Allen, bassist Branden Campbell and drummer Elaine Bradley. 

The band’s music is characterized by its upbeat, guitar-driven sound and Glenn’s powerful vocals. Drawing on a variety of influences, including new wave, punk and pop, Neon Trees has developed a unique style that is both infectious and danceable. Their music usually deals with themes of love, loss and self-discovery conveyed through lyrics that are often infused with a sense of youthful optimism and energy. 

Neon Trees first gained attention in 2010 with the release of their debut album, “Habits,” which featured the hit single “Animal” — a high-energy pop-rock song that showcases the band’s signature sound and distinct style. From the first notes of the opening guitar riff to the explosive chorus, “Animal” grabs the listener’s attention and refuses to let go. The song’s upbeat tempo and catchy melody instantaneously transport you to a grassy field in the middle of summer, while a soft wind blows over your skin. Glenn’s powerful and emotive voice soars over the driving guitar and drums, delivering lyrics that are both relatable and catchy. The song is an instant earworm that is sure to stay with you long after it’s over.

The song was a massive success, reaching number 13 on the Billboard Hot 100 and topping the Billboard Alternative Songs chart. “Animal” continued to grow in popularity along with the band’s dedicated fanbase. In 2011, the song won Top Alternative Song at the Billboard Music Awards and was nominated for Top Rock Song. 

Neon Trees followed up “Habits” with their sophomore effort, “Picture Show,” which brought the hit single “Everybody Talks.” The album received critical acclaim and cemented Neon Trees’ place in the alternative rock pantheon. Overall, the band has released three EPs, 18 singles, and four albums. 

Their most recent album, “I Can Feel You Forgetting Me,” was released in 2020 and features some of the band’s most personal and introspective songs to date. From the opening track “Nights” to the raw and vulnerable ballad “Mess Me Up,” this album is a journey through the highs and lows of love and loss. Musically, “I Can Feel You Forgetting Me” is a departure from Neon Trees’ earlier, more pop-oriented sound. Instead, the band embraces a more stripped-down, atmospheric style that allows their lyrics and emotions to take center stage. The instrumentation is minimalistic, creating a dreamy, ethereal backdrop for lead singer Glenn’s emotive vocals. 

Highlights of the album include “Used to Like,” a bittersweet reflection of a past relationship, and “New Best Friend,” a catchy and upbeat song about finding comfort in a friendship. The album closes with the title track, “I Can Feel You Forgetting Me,” a haunting song that captures the pain of watching someone slip away. This stunning labrum showcases Neon Trees’ artistry and ability to capture a range of emotion from heartbreak to healing while also capturing the timeless spirit of rock.  

Cochise, born Terrell Coxx, is a Jamaican-American rapper and singer who has gained significant popularity in recent years for his unique style and sound. Born in Palm Beach, Florida, Cochise’s music was influenced by his early exposure to Reggae and Dancehall music. His music now is a blend of trap, R&B and lo-fi hip-hop. Cochise’s music draws inspiration from other rappers and artists such as Amine, Playboi Carti and Trippie Redd.

Cochise first gained attention on SoundCloud, where he uploaded his early tracks and quickly gained a dedicated following. He released his first EP in 2018 titled “Pulp,” followed by his second EP “Hijack” produced by Lousho in 2019. His later singles “Hatchback” and “Redhead” took on a more playful approach to his music and incorporated a higher-pitched voice that he is now known for. “Hatchback” in particular features a catchy chorus and memorable beat that quickly became viral on TikTok. 

Since then, Cochise has continued to release music and collaborate with other artists in the hip-hop and R&B industries. He has gained a reputation for his creative vision and his ability to push the boundaries of what is possible in modern rap music. One of his most well known songs is the single “Tell Em” with fellow rapper $not which reached number 64 on the Billboard Hot 100. Cochise’s discography consists of 30 singles, two EPs, and two albums: “Benbow Crescent” released in 2021 and “The Inspection” released in 2022. 

As heard in his top singles including “Tell Em” and “POCKET ROCKET,” one of the most distinctive aspects of Cochise’s music is his use of distorted guitar riffs that give his tracks a punk rock edge and sets them apart from other trap-influenced rap songs. This combination of genres creates a sound that is both aggressive and melodic, with catchy hooks and memorable verses that stick in the listener’s head. Cochise’s rapid-fire delivery and ability to switch his cadence seamlessly, as well as his use of ad-libs and vocal effects, add another layer of complexity. These characteristics make his tracks feel dynamic and unpredictable even with a repetitive riff.

His most recent single titled “KANEKI” was just released this past week and is the first track Cochise has shared from his upcoming album, “NO ONE’S NICE TO ME, NO ONE’S NICE TO ME.” This song encapsulates Cochise’s signature style and vocals but presents a more melodic backtrack that simultaneously complements and clashes with his techno beats, creating a uniquely arranged track.   

The Green Key concert promises to be a night of high energy and diverse music as Neon Trees and Cochise come together on the Gold Coast Lawn. By bringing together music of vastly different genres and styles, the audience is likely to stay engaged.