I’m so glad to have my life back. Instead of spending my Saturday night binge-watching some terrible show on TV, I was able to spend it at a high-energy show watching people shove each other around while feeling the beat of a bass drum in my soul. Yeah, it was perfect and I am still on cloud nine even though my head is throbbing and my back is killing me (okay, maybe I’m getting a little old for all of this).
Saturday night’s show started off with an acoustic set from Alex Tulp. I’ll be honest, it was not quite what I was expecting knowing the headliner and how much power and energy they have but I loved every second of Alex’s quick opening set. I remember Alex from way back in the day as a member of The Friendly Beers. Back when I was in college, I worked with a non-profit that put on shows throughout Saint Paul and The Friendly Beers was a band that played frequently. I remember always loving them but I’d be lying if I said I remembered much more than that. Part of me wanted seeing Alex on stage to trigger some memories but part of me was glad it didn’t. I was able to go into his set with a clean slate and I feel like that just added to the vibe.
Even though Alex was definitely an interesting choice as an opener for this show, the audience gave him an undeniable sense of respect throughout his set. Sure, there were moments where the chatter seemed to overpower his emotionally drenched lyrics but can you blame the people in the audience? It had been over a year since some of these people had seen each other so there’s no blame to place here. Even with the chatter roaring at times, Alex powered through his quick opening set with so much heart and conviction coming through with every track that it was impossible to not fall in love with this man and his music. I honestly could have stood there for hours on end just taking in Alex’s beautiful voice and brilliant lyrics but I knew that the night was going to take a huge shift as soon as he left the stage and that’s exactly what happened.
Saturday’s headlining act was the one and only Blue Felix. If you live in the Twin Cities, chances are you know who these guys are even if you’ve never seen them. They are a local metal band that has a notoriously powerful live show and a sound to match. I’ve seen these guys a handful of times before and have gotten some flack for some of the things I’ve said about them but let’s just clear the air now. Sure, these guys have a sound that isn’t quite my thing but their show is what keeps me coming back. I won’t spend much time in this post talking about their music because, again, it’s not quite for me but their show is absolutely for me. As soon as I saw vocalist Jakke Crooks’ (AKA Toxsick Tripp) signature mohawk through the fog, I felt an excitement take over me that I hadn’t felt in over a year and a half. I was on cloud nine from that moment until the bitter end of the show.
Saturday was Blue Felix’s first show since 2019. Just typing that and saying that out loud gives me chills. A lot of bands, venues, and people in the music industry didn’t make it through the past year and a half but Blue Felix did and they came back on the other side sounding better than they ever have. I know I said wasn’t going to spend much time talking about their music, and I won’t, but I will say either something changed with them or something changed with me. Regardless of what it was, I found Blue Felix’s music to come off a bit more perfected and clean than I have ever heard it sound.
There’s just something about the energy that Blue Felix brings to the stage. From the powerful lights that seem to match the music perfectly to the occasional sparks flying from a metal grinder to just add a little pizzazz, these guys know how to entertain. Beyond their talent of keeping an audience engaged and excited is, well, the audience themselves. Blue Felix has a devoted following that I just love watching. They know every word to every song and they never slow down. I won’t go so far as to say that there was an epic mosh pit last night but I will say it was nice to see people bumping up against each other and creating a sweaty mess that we have all been missing for far too long. I’ve been to a few shows now and my calendar is quickly picking up steam but I truly think last night was the first time I really felt like things were back to normal. Just seeing strangers turning into friends in front of my face and seeing people bumping around the small and packed venue– I was absolutely in my happy place throughout the night.
Last night was all over the place and I wouldn’t have changed anything about it. Beyond live music in general, the thing I’ve missed the most throughout the past year and half was the sense of community and family. Although I’m not a part of this particular family and tend to just be a visitor whenever I am able to catch Blue Felix, just seeing and feeling that made last night absolutely amazing.
Live music is back people! Get out there and experience it!