There are many ways to describe Cigarettes After Sex—certainly more than might otherwise be expected, given their sonic and visual style.

Their music is broadly indie rock, with more specific categorizations into dream pop, shoegaze, and slowcore. Their stage setup is simple, with smog and the occasional bit of film noir cast on a screen behind the three lit-up players: Greg Gonzalez on vocals and guitar, Randall Miller on bass, and Jacob Tomsky on drums.

Above all, between their sound, their stage setup, and their explosive popularity, Cigarettes After Sex have proven that, in this day and age (and perhaps any), dialing in a vibe can be just as potent a formula for success as having an eclectic repertoire backed by an awe-inspiring light show.

Surely, Cigarettes After Sex didn’t need much in the way of bells and whistles to wow a sold-out crowd at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles on Thursday. From the moment they stepped out from behind a wall of smoke to open with “Crush” to the final notes of “Opera House” as the encore, the band was bombarded by screams, shouts, and singalongs from a raucous audience.

In between, the trio from El Paso, TX were nothing if not steady and on-point with their presentation. The sensual androgyny of Greg’s voice rang true through every staple pulled from the band’s consistent catalog, including their initial breakout song, “Nothing’s Gonna Hurt You Baby”, off their 2012 EP, I. Scenes of burning roses served as backdrops to “Cry” and “Sunsetz”, while a moonlit ocean shone behind “Falling in Love” and “Heavenly”. As Greg stepped to the microphone to sing “K.”, the screen was lit up with the black-and-white image of a woman smoking a cigarette (presumably after sex).

And when those carefully curated images weren’t on display—as was the case during “Sweet” and “Apocalypse”—some smoke and a few lights sufficed to create the feeling of post-coital casualness that has become Cigarettes After Sex’s calling card.

That same vibe permeates the group’s new music, including “Bubblegum”, which made it into the setlist during the first of Cigarettes After Sex’s two August shows in Los Feliz.

Since that two-song EP only just debuted in late July, it may only be a matter of time before the next tranche of songs makes it onto the airwaves, much to the delight of the band’s rabid fans. Should that come to pass, Cigarettes After Sex will have ample opportunity to test out every tune in front of a rapt live audience.

The band’s North American tour has only just begun, with sold-out headlining shows in Denver, Salt Lake City, Vancouver, Minneapolis, Chicago, Toronto, Philadelphia, Boston, Washington D.C., Atlanta, Nashville, New York, and across Texas on the calendar. Come the end of October, Greg, Randall, and Jacob will take their act to Europe, with a whopping seven also-sold-out dates around the U.K. therein. For a full list of tour dates head here.

Wherever they go, Cigarettes After Sex will surely bring with them the same sense of effortless sensuality that pervades their musical and visual appeal, both live and on record.

And, who knows? By the time they’re back stateside, be it the end of this year or going into 2024, Cigarettes After Sex may well have accumulated a whole new set of superlatives, along with another legion of followers willing and able to sway the night away.

Scroll down to check out a gallery of photos from Cigarettes After Sex at the Greek Theatre courtesy of photographer Josh Martin.

Cigarettes After Sex – Greek Theatre – Los Angeles, CA – 8/17/23 – Full Video

[Video: Redify]