Never have I ever gone to a cafe to see music and end up doing yoga. My, was I in for a surprise in downtown Minneapolis this past Monday night when I went to see the Context Tour which features Cautious Clay and Remi Wolf.
Fineline Music Cafe kind of sneaks up on you as you’re walking through the chaos of 1st avenue, but once I got inside I was shocked at how pleasantly warm and inviting this setting was- being in the middle of so much cold and confusion outside. The warm wooden interior made us feel like we were in the comfort of our own living room, and was joined by a very comfortably sized standing area and stage. Joining the venue itself was a very calm, conversational crowd that seemed ready to just have a laid back night with some laid back music. The opener soon came out to join us.
Remi Wolf hands down has the most captivating voice I have heard at any concert to date. The young California native had more than just a bass drum dropping with her music – jaws were hitting the floor in awe. She showed us a variety of her pieces, my favorite being a song called “Guy” which she claimed is about her dog? Ha! She also covered a few hits like “Crazy” by Gnarls Barkley and “Electric Feel” by MGMT. Besides her music, her personality shined as she joked about Minnesota accents, joined the audience in complaining about the cold, and even lead us in some stretching and hand-shaking-like Yoga; She was a treat to us all. I hate to use a cliche, but Remi was a ball of energy and was full of passion. I’ll never forget how authentically she owned that stage.
Remi left the stage and joined us in the audience to watch the main act take the spotlight. From Cleveland, Ohio we had Joshua Karpeh (Cautious Clay) – an absolute music man. He played us songs like “Silos,” “REASONS” and “Call Me.” You can’t really go wrong with any of Clay’s music and I would invite anyone to check him out on your own, but what I want to focus on more here is how talented this guy is. We lost count of how many freaking instruments the man can play. Clay came out and not only could pick up the guitar, but mid-song (on several occasions) pulled out a saxophone. If that wasn’t enough, he played the flute on several occasions as well – on TOP of singing the whole show. We were blown away. Cautious and his band did a spectacular job at jamming out and keeping things exciting but mellow – a favorite moment of mine being an instance where they segued a song into a brief cover of “It Was a Good Day” by Ice Cube. Respect.
On top of his music, Clay gave us a great taste of his humble, playful personality. He came with “Minneapolis, what the f*** is up man?” and asked us if we were having a good “cold a** day” and I’d say that we were – because of him. He floated around stage in such an eloquent and blissful way that his music just made the whole spectacle that much more enjoyable. This was Clay’s first visit to Minneapolis – and we hope it won’t be his last.