Review: Purity Ring in Vancouver

By Alli Hayes

The Vogue was powered by a weight of new sounds on Tuesday night, with a long ass line-up to get into the venue that almost lasted through mystic HANA’s opening set. It was no doubt Vancity was going to be hit with some much-needed future pop impact.

HANA, who’s spent the past year touring with Grimes and has been praised by Lorde and Lana Del Rey alike, blew off the start to the show. She has a strong voice that, for this time of year, you can’t help but want to feel haunted by. Her lyrics are romantically twisted, piercing through the crowd all on her own.

After catching the last part of her set, the much anticipated Purity Ring hit the stage with vocalist Megan James eerily belting Heartsigh nowhere to be seen. She slowly crept through a beautifully beaded light installation that added a soft yet lavish galactic feel to the performance: a costly investment to the aesthetic. I couldn’t have imagined the set without it.

The duo has stepped up their intentions to put on an original spectacle, a collaborative achievement where every sound and every touch has a larger purpose to its overall concept. It’s no wonder they don’t do encores, everything is crafted down to the last note.

Megan James and Corin Roddick have been working hard to evolve as a pop band, destigmatizing the reality of top 40 one trap beat at a time, while furthering their hands-on live performances, and James adding her own (literal) touch to the set, playing with rare instrumental gear that lights up from the palm of your hand. The band’s sophomore album, Another Eternity, has perhaps solidified a direction for the Canadian duo. What accidentally started out as a raw, indie vibe on their debut project Shrines, has become a trap-heavy influence with relatable lyrics and a unique, memorable sound. It’s equally interesting to look around at the vibe of the crowd, the majority of those on the dance floor leaning into the music as more of a trap/hip hop sound than an electronic event. Moving up to the upper bowl, everyone was engaged but refreshingly in a chill zone, it was nice to really take in the performance from a calmer perspective.

If you missed the show, I send my best vibes to your FOMO, but be sure to listen at home to both HANA and Purity Ring, where you can find a little bit of everything.


alliAlli is a wildcard. Faux fur is her wingman. She is constantly moved by art, cool parties, and independent film, and continues to create her own projects. She wishes her photographic memory did her Instagram more justice.  Check out her blog at