I leave for California in just a couple of hours which means I’ve been a ball of stress for days. I took a couple nights off from shows just so I could get ready for the trip but that was clearly the worst choice I could have made. My fear of flying has been getting the best of me and I truly just can’t calm myself down no matter what I do. Although I’m far from ready to leave in a couple of hours, I had to do something to calm my nerves and the only thing I knew that could help me was a show so I found myself spending my night before a nerve wracking flight finding solace in a concert from some of the best bands out there right now.
Due to the early start time for this all ages show I missed majority of opening act Slow Mass but the songs I did catch had me wishing I had left work just a wee bit earlier to catch their entire set. Soft and sweet at times but a clear edge at others (which would be the theme of majority of the night), Slow Mass’ music was familiar but not cliche or feeling like they were trying to be anything other than what they are. The beauty in vocalist Mercedes Webb’s voice was matched by the beauty and thoughtfulness that was clearly put into the instrumentation. With every note having a purpose and every word having a meaning, the fact that this band was opening up this show said everything. Most of the time you can tell when an opener is on stage and there are clear reasons why said band is opening. Slow Mass made it clear that, although they were first up, they were not going to act like just another opening band. Commanding the audience and stage with ease, I wouldn’t be surprised to see their name headlining a show here in the Twin Cities sooner rather than later. They set the tone for the rest of the night and to say it was the perfect tone would be an understatement.
Gouge Away could have played for hours and I don’t think anyone in the crowd would have complained but we still had one band to go and a strict all ages curfew to abide by. The stage was changed over quickly for the headliners- La Dispute. As soon as the lights went down and the band took the stage, the mood in the air shifted to something a little bit more emotional and with more depth. La Dispute is one of those bands where you either love them or hate them. Definitely a band where lyrics reign supreme and said lyrics hit a bit too close for comfort, La Dispute has never failed to leave me emotionally exhausted but with a smile on my face. With four albums, eleven EPs and various other releases, this band is not a new thing to the scene but it seems like it’s taken people a little while to catch onto their unique spoken-word styled post-hardcore sound. That being said, having seen them in an empty Triple Rock years ago to seeing them last night with a good sized crowd around me had me feeling so happy and warm. This is a band that does so much good for so many great organizations (they raise a lot of money for charity and just seem to have the biggest hearts ever) and gives people so much passion and hope through their music (one of those “this band saved my life” bands) that they are more than deserving of all of the attention they have been getting lately.
Last night’s show could have gone on for hours and it still wouldn’t have been enough for me. I woke up back to my state of being a ball of anxiety over my flight today but I also had a giant smile on my face. Music is a hell of a drug.