I Took My Friend In Alaska To See Rezz At The Armory! (Social Distancing Style)


Yep – you read that right.  


Well – it was probably the most unique and hilarious concert experiences of my life, and we haven’t even talked about the music yet. So, I could start an explanation here but… like… Why the heck not? Why feel alone when your best friend is bored in the northern tundra. 

It was a usual Friday evening for me as I got myself dressed up to head downtown to The Armory in Minneapolis. Cold as usual, I felt confident with my light clothing choices since I have learned to pack light for raves; they get steamy – literally. So I was dressed light, feeling good – and cruising down the freeway, both nervous and excited, as I headed to my first rave since before the pandemic. So much had happened since my last rave, and I was really caught in a sentimental state when my phone started ringing.

A conversation occurred – and laughs were deployed as the phone call turned into a facetime once I was parked; My friend from Alaska was not in his apartment last night; we were now raving together – socially distanced, is all 🙂 

A Hundred Drums truly brought the energy of that exactly. I got inside to the armory after checking in and seeing an ugly guy I’m related to called “@NorthstarImagery” (he’s my brother, and bro – that’s payback for gashing my head open – Christmas 2012). The EDM sound of Denver, CO was pounding the crowd blissfully as we all startled to trickle in. It was at this time that I was showing Mr. Alaska friend my usual hangout spots around the venue, showing him some of my favorite bartenders – and of course, parts of the show. 

You see – raves are about music, but they are more than that in a way which no other genre can hold a candle. Any rave you go to is a *cosmopolitan canopy*; a community of joy-seeking-souls that are genuinely just looking to feel loved and love the world around them. Yes – some chemicals help this process produce some of those blissful desired outcomes – but, I am a professional and keep it to drinks. I was walking my friend through all this between bass drops and laser shows when Drums took a bow, and we had Of The Trees come to stage. 

Of The Trees really got the crowd going and it was only about 9pm or so when they got to the stage. The arena was growing in size of crowd, as the lights and bass got louder and more and more glorious. Of The Trees had some stage visuals on a screen behind them that really stood out to my buddy and I as we explored the venue, navigating between glowstick Knights of the Night and fishnets, metallic leggings and shirts, and a whole lot of “Chads” running around out of place in button ups and jeans (no dress codes, but “When In Rome” did come to mind? ha). And that goes back to that point earlier – everyone is accepted here, and everyone – I mean everyone – is smiling at a rave; sometimes just at the floor or ceiling though! Of The Trees was super vocal and seemed to want to befriend the crowd which I really appreciated. 

I continued on with my night – carrying my friend around, and at one point he and I cheers’d a drink at the bar (remember we’re on my phone). By the time EPROM came out we could barely walk around the whole place – it was that packed. Don’t know much about Portland, Oregon but dang do I want to know how they got their hands on Alexander Dennis; the guy truly might be the best EDM artist from the pacific northwest that I am aware of. The lights and jams were truly soaring at this point, and the joint was so hot that I was starting to do things like tie my extra shirts around my waste etc. but raves are always hot, I’ve found. Next time I might wear shorts (?). 

Now, I’m not gonna lie – what happened next was what we should have expected: Rezz’s set was absolutely stunning and sensational; the type of performance that truly made me and many others feel an out-of-body experience. The Canadian-but-Ukrainian-born EDM icon no doubt has a lot on their mind this week with the news being what it is – but my god, she didn’t hold back and it was almost damn near inspiring. After everything we have been dealing with this past week, on top of COVID and the past few years in general – it truly felt in that moment that everything could feel okay again. 

We’re not there yet folks – the Big Sick is still rolling around and we gotta stay diligent, but damn did it feel good to be back out with this community again and getting a chance to see the glory of Rezz. It’s not that COVID is over – but maybe, just maybe, for me and many others – the Big Sad is finally wrapping up due to joys like art and music becoming accessible again in public. 

I eventually crawled out of the Armory, stunned by the sensations I had just experienced, yes, but also just laughing to myself repeatedly; I brought a dude to a rave with me on my freaking phone.

No – I have no idea why I am the way I am! Ha. 


Cosmopolitan Canopy: “the urban island of civility that exists amidst the ghettos, suburbs, and ethnic enclaves where segregation is the norm.”