On Sunday night, sister-duo Aly & AJ brought their “A Touch of the Beat Tour” to Portland’s Roseland Theater for a night of pop elegance. Alyson and Amanda Michalka – better known as Aly & AJ – have been releasing music for close to two decades, releasing their debut album Into the Rush all the way back in 2005 through the Disney owned Hollywood Records. The sisters were closely aligned with Disney in the mid 2000s – co-starring in the Disney Channel romantic comedy Cow Belles in 2006 and releasing their second album Insomniatic through Hollywood Records in 2007 – but later chose to leave the label and their Disney days behind them.
Now, in 2022, the sisters have completely come into their own as artists. Over a decade after releasing their debut, they released two EPs – Ten Years and Sanctuary – each of which were fantastic forays into the world of synth-pop and the sounds of the 1980s. They kept the ball rolling by releasing their first full length album in almost 15 years last year called A Touch of the Beat Gets You Up on Your Feet Gets You Out and Then Into the Sun, this time embracing sounds and aesthetics of the 1960s and 1970s. It seems as though no matter the sound, Aly & AJ know how to deliver, and that was made all the more clear after seeing them perform in Portland.
Aly & AJ’s performance style could be described as powerful yet understated. The sun-soaked aesthetics of their last album were full force as the sisters’ vocals soared while live guitars, drums, and piano filled the theater with warmth and atmosphere. They played songs from each of their studio albums and had fans losing their minds to new favorites like “Pretty Places”, “Take Me”, and “Lost Cause” as well as old classics like “Chemicals React” and “Potential Breakup Song”. The show as a whole was a gorgeous display of sisterly love and immense musical talent that we’re so happy we got to experience. Check out some photos from their Portland show below and click here to see the rest of Aly & AJ’s tour dates!