Last April I stumbled upon a show I knew nothing about and ended up having a truly memorable night. Everything about the night was perfect but Flint Eastwood was the icing on the cake. I loved every minute of her set and when it was all said and done I was left craving another live performance from her. Nearly a year has passed but last night was my chance to catch this amazing musician for the second time and I was ready.
Local songstress Devata Daun kicked the show off with her unique yet siren-like voice and minimalist electronic sounds. Nikki Pfeifer (AKA Devata Daun) is the co-owner of Pytch Records here in the Twin Cities and has truly found a perfect niche to latch onto. Joined on stage by other co-owner C. Kostra, Nikki serenaded the late arriving fans with her special brand of soothing yet energetic music. Although the sounds pumping through the speakers were perfect background music to meeting up with friends and grabbing a drink, there was no ignoring the sound. It wasn’t in your face but it always there and made a very warm and inviting atmosphere for the people coming into the 7th Street Entry on a bitterly cold Sunday night.
Following Devata Daun was Detroit based songwriter/ producer- Nydge. A rare gem an over-saturated scene, Nydge’s beats were enough to have me dancing along even though I rarely get into DJ sets. Although there wasn’t an extravagant live show to watch it was truly impressive to watch as he effortlessly switched between a keyboard and Kaoss Pad creating explosive and expressive soundscapes as he went. With majority of his songs being collaborations with musicians that weren’t present, it would have been so easy for Nydge to just hit the spacebar on a computer and let his tracks play but instead of doing that (which I’ve seen one too many DJ’s do), he was making the music happen in front of the crowd’s eyes and working his ass off to produce the polished music coming through the speakers. Nydge’s set was truly the best way to get ready for Flint Eastwood’s set as he had definitely warmed up the crowd and all had us comfortable with the idea of dancing like fools.
After a quick set change-over, it was time for Flint Eastwood and you could tell that the crowd was ready for it. The modest crowd roared with applause at first sight of Jax Anderson (AKA Flint Eastwood) and she and her two band members wasted no time taking advantage of that energy and jumping into what would become an electric set that had the entire crowd dancing along.
Flint Eastwood’s music is not what I would typically listen too. It’s a bit pop with a hint of electronica and whole lot of power but when listening to her recordings, it seems to lose a bit of it’s charm. So maybe I don’t sit at work every day listening to her three EP’s on repeat but I will always go see her live. Seeing the way she presents the music to the audience is what makes Flint Eastwood who she is and is the reason why people like me (who don’t even really like the music) keep on going back to see her. Her passion and conviction is more than enough for you to fall in love with her music and find yourself dancing around like a complete fool throughout her set.
Jax has one of those infectious smiles. You could be having one of the toughest days of your life but as soon as you walk into one of her shows and see her smiling face framed by her long red braided pigtails, any sorrow or stress you’re feeling instantly falls to the wayside. There’s a sense of comfort about her and a sense of “real life” that radiates from her. She comes off as the best friend you never knew you had but with a voice full of power, angst, and beauty that should be heard by everyone. Having followed this woman for the past year, it truly warmed my heart to see how many people were singing along to her music during last night’s set. Although I want her to stay independent so I can keep seeing her in such intimate venues, she’s too great of a person and too inspirational to stay small.
Last time when I saw Flint Eastwood, she gave the crowd a little pep talk about existing in the moment and living a life of passion. That speech truly hit home and carved a giant spot in my heart for Jax. Sunday night’s pep talk was about female empowerment and not letting anything hold you back. “You are just as good as your heroes! You Are just as good as your heroes!” Those words will echo in my head for awhile. The way she barked that phrase at the crowd with an undeniable sense of conviction and passion for what she was saying truly gave me chills. Again, it’s like watching the best friend you never knew you had or even needed but quickly realizing your life would never be the same with out them– that’s my relationship with Jax Anderson and I don’t think I’m alone on that.
Flint Eastwood’s set was full of songs that span her three EP career. Although she frequently addressed the crowd and the “woo girls” in the front row, the banter wasn’t distracting or obnoxious– it was more perfect and a great example of just how down to earth Jax is as a human. Half way through the set, Jax admitted to the crowd that she had a fever and wasn’t feeling too great. Honestly, I wouldn’t have been able to tell until she said “My name is Jax Anakin…. wait, Jax Anderson– although I would love to be a Jedi!” Fever or no fever, her energy level was sky high and I was mesmerized as I watch her pigtails bounce along with her to the beat and the smile that never faded from her face.
Sunday night’s show was one of those shows that I never wanted to end. There are some people that just have such a positive energy about them that they can pull you out of any rut you are in and Flint Eastwood is one of those people. I truly urge you to catch her if she comes anywhere near you to perform. It’ll be a night you won’t forget and a feeling that you will literally crave after you experience it just once.
Here are some photos from her show at the Skyway a few months ago