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Third Times a Charm? Seeing Indigo De Souza at Thalia Hall

Warning: this article might be sappy and will surely be biased. Indigo De Souza has been one of my favorite artists since I saw her at Pitchfork’s music festival in 2022. That year, I had lo mein noodles spilling out of my mouth, was drenched by the rain, and was in complete awe of De Souza’s passion and performance as my cowboy boots sank deeper and deeper into the mud. I had just journeyed from abroad, where I shared a bunk bed with Sici. We would wake up in a rush and play her song “Take Off Your Pants” almost every morning. My point is, every time I’ve seen De Souza it’s been an important marker in my life. The first time, I was about to start my senior year of college, the second time, I had just been broken up with two days before graduating college, and this third time, I was circled by my friends, working at a job that I’ve always wanted to do, content in who I am and smiling at the person I was the first time I saw her. In the meantime, I would make the girls (and anyone willing) listen to me butcher “How I Get Myself Killed” on karaoke nights. 

The “thing” that initially drew me to De Souza was her lyricism coupled with the occasional off-kilter scream. De Souza has a way of stringing together different albums with her lyrics and imagery that reminds me of the realization of constant change paired with the anchor of your past self. I still wear the Doc Martens I got Freshman year of high school, I’m still obsessed with chocolate croissants, and I still listen to Death Cab for Cutie. De Souza’s music made me comfortable in that realization, in the waves of growing up, in remembering how you felt in your high school parking lot, and the sinking feeling of wanting to walk by their apartment one more time in college. 

second time seeing De Souza

Last Thursday, my roommates and I rushed around the house, scurrying between closets, shimmying in and out of skirts and blouses until we were satisfied and the Uber was on the corner. We gradually made our way into Thalia Hall past the security wands, grabbing popcorn and beers on our way to a spot on the left side (we were on the right side last time). De Souza came onto stage to the song “Like a G6” followed by a sea of shouts and whoops. This was when I noticed that the venue was significantly more packed than the last time I saw her. 

At this show, I realized how much of her discography is connected. The lyrics act as a motif between different albums, reworked, redone, and reworded to shift the listener into different memories and spaces in time. In her 2018 track, “Good Heart,” she croons, “Was it something that I said/Is it the way I stood so still.” Mirroring this song in 2021’s “Darker Than Death,” De Souza’s chorus rings, “Was it something I said?/Was it something I did?” Both songs examine herself, criticizing her emotions, yet feeling every inch of them. I personally always love hearing this track (and my friends and I growling “You wouldn’t look me in the eyes” with her).

She creates the environment of an indie, folky, campsite full of emotion, dance breaks, dreamy tones, and her classic raspy screams. De Souza’s passion for her music is seen in her time and care in every lyric, every break, every note she plays. I felt like I was alongside De Souza and myself through high school to college, and to the present. Her presence on stage loosened as the night went on, acting almost like a conversation between the crowd and herself. I gradually noticed more voices yelling lyrics and more swarms of arms making their way into the air. 

At this show, De Souza played a lot of older tracks that I was happy to hear again paired with new ones from her 2023 album All of This Will End. After one of my favorite songs of the night, “You Can Be Mean,” a rocking, upbeat, catchy ballad about dating a guy that you’d “like to think” has “A good heart/And your dad was just an asshole growing up.” De Souza followed the song with a little monologue about dating scummy people, leaving the crowd with the following wise advice, “It’s better to be alone than dating an asshole.” Following screaming at assholes, De Souza brings the crowd back to love with her track “Hold You.” The bedroom pop track (with a killer bass line btw) had me and the girls squishing faces, morphing into one body that swayed back and forth. 

first time seeing De Souza (the drenched shirt and lo mein included)

De Souza’s music has held a lot of memories for me and candidly held my hand through various points in my life (assholes, parking lots, home games, breakups, dance parties, and early morning wakeups on a bunk bed). She’s one of those artists that I always circle back to like the same book I read once a year, like the Adidas Stan Smiths I always buy, like the string cheese that is in my lunchbox again. “I’m a growing girl/My ups and downs are natural.”

Below is a little video of the third time seeing De Souza (and us growling "you wouldn't look me in the eyes")


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