The last Friday in February turned out to be the start of an incredible weekend of music around the Twin Cities, with several shows to pick and choose from, including the one and only K. Flay at First Avenue. That is where I found myself on a chilly winter evening, eagerly anticipating K. Flay’s return to Minneapolis. It had been a few weeks since the last show I went to, and I felt the comfort and warmth of First Ave flow through me as I waited for the first opener of the night.
Taking the stage first was corook, singer songwriter extraordinaire. Right from the start, corook brought a quirky and fun stage presence that immediately caught the crowd’s attention. I was surprised that the singer exclaimed that this was their first tour ever, being asked by K. Flay to be a part of this tour after listening to a few of their songs. One unique and refreshing aspect of corook’s set is that they let their personality shine, mixing humor and comedic stops to their songs to show off their multitude of talents. Backed by a guitarist and a drummer, corook entertained and won over the crowd with their jokes and stage antics, as well as their raw and personal music.
Following corook was up and coming artist UPSAHL. With a little different vibe than corook, UPSAHL wasted no time getting into the groove of their set, getting the crowd dancing along to their infectious music. The intense moodiness of their live set was incredible; there were large pockets of the crowd that kept the dance party alive, vibing along to every bass line. UPSAHL, also bringing along a guitarist and a drummer, seemed to command the crowd and stage with effortless confidence, playing what felt like a headliner set that perfectly got the crowd ready for K. Flay to take the stage.
Last but certainly not least, K. Flay took the stage shortly after 9:45 to an eager crowd. A veteran to First Ave and donning with fresh blue hair, K. Flay opened up her set with “Four Letter Words.” The nearly sold out First Ave was completely captivated right from the start, won over by the raw honesty and passion K. Flay emulated on stage throughout the career spanning set. The crowd, mixed with fans old and new, sang along to old favorites (“FML,” “Make Me Fade,” and “Dreamers”) and new songs (“Four Letter Words,” “TGIF,” and “Nothing Can Kill Is”) alike. What seemed to be a shared favorite part of the set was K. Flay’s incredible stage presence and crowd interaction; the passion K. Flay has for her music and live show was overflowing from the stage, leaving an unforgettable experience. One of my most memorable set’s of K. Flay’s I’ve ever seen was in Cambridge, MA at the Middle East; even as K. Flay draws larger crowds, she knows how to make her set feel intimate in any setting, including tonight at First Ave. I have had the pleasure of catching K. Flay at First Avenue three times, and each time her cathartic live set wins me over and leaves myself, along with many in the crowd, eagerly awaiting her return to the Twin Cities. [photos]