Double the Vocalists, Double the Fun
Chicago-based Slow Mass eased the crowd into the night with mellow rock melodies aided by purple hued lightening with red undertones.
They had a great contrast to their sound, due primarily to their spectacular use of two singers. When done well, this technique brings an unforgettable dynamic to a performance, and Slow Mass does it particularly well.
Frontwoman Mercedes Webb has an alluring voice which slides effortlessly between notes, while Dave Collis adds powerful screams as the intensity builds in the choruses.
During the typical band-banter section of the show, they’d switch the microphone to have an echoing reverb effect and speak to the crowd that way. With artists constantly having the ability to do this, I’m surprised this is the first time I’ve seen a band utilize it and playfully interact with the crowd.
Keep up with Slow Mass here.
Causing an “Uproar”
When Florida-based group Gouge Away came on stage, just the first note alone evoked the creation of a mosh pit front and center of the venue.
Frontwoman Christina Michelle is noticeably explosive. It’s not only rare to see a woman fronting a hardcore band but it’s also rare to see a lead-singer with such endless fire and vivacity.
If you’re feeling like you don’t belong and that you’re not represented in this scene, I see you, and you need to know that your presence here is the most important thing.Christina Michelle of Gouge Away
One of the greatest things about Fine Line is the layout and how it advocates for an intimate experience with performers. Michelle took full advantage of this as she continually threw the microphone into the crowd, letting audience members sing along.
Gouge Away puts on a fierce and impassioned performance, while persistently advocating for the safety and belongingness of each person in attendance.
Check out Gouge Away here.
A Panoramic Performance
The second Gouge Away played their last note, the floor filled up and pushed towards the stage in preparation for La Dispute. It was no secret that fans were ready to hear the new material live.
In a video by Diffus, La Dispute frontman Jordan Dreyer explains the creative ideas behind Panorama and the writing (and re-writing) process. One thing that makes the advertising behind this album stand out is that it was promoted via video game.
Before Panorama was released, fans were given access to the album as it played in the background of the immersive video game. It was an interactive way to experience the album, as well as to support the LGBTQ* community. All donated proceeds go to The Trevor Project.
If you are making someone feel uncomfortable, the exit is that way.Jordan Dreyer of La Dispute
La Dispute took the stage at nine and, to be honest, I wasn’t sure what to expect. With the melancholy nature of their music, and the stage decked out in salt lamps, I figured the energy would be lacking. I sure was wrong in assuming that.
They sounded even better live than they do recorded, and somehow I felt rejuvenated, excited, enraged, and inspired all at once. Dreyer’s ability to convey such deep emotion through the written word is unmatched, and his vocal execution is flawless.
About 5 songs in, they stopped to make a quick public service announcement and express their concern for the safety of their fans.
Dreyer called out, “If you are making someone feel uncomfortable, the exit is that way. This is a safe space in here and there are fewer and fewer places out there that are that way. We have to be vigilant in keeping our spaces safe.”
When bands use their platform in such a positive and uplifting way, it is a breath of fresh air. How wonderful to know that a group you support, supports your well-being just as much.
Last time we were here we played at Triple Rock for about five peopleJordan Dreyer of La Dispute
The energy that La Dispute brings to their performance is incomparable. With two drumkits, Dreyer equipped with a tambourine, and band members interacting with each person in the front row (the perks of a venue with no barricade), it is impossible to be disinterested.
They mentioned that the last time they were in the Twin Cities they played at Triple Rock (R.I.P.) “for about five people”. What a tremendous victory to now have Fine Line packed tightly with fans who were jumping and singing along throughout their entire set.
As the night wrapped up and left Dreyer literally wrapped up in the cord from his microphone, he announced that he was working on a solution to the reoccurring problem of being tied up from all of his spinning on stage.
He also announced the band was working on a new concert structure, as the standard technique didn’t seem authentic. Then he explained there would be no encore, just three songs left.
The crowd cheered in agreement as La Dispute began playing “RHODONITE AND GRIEF,” one of the more popular songs off of their newest album. During this piece, they even broke out a trumpet!
If you’re looking for a band that writes powerful lyrics, performs them with boundless emotion, and cares about their fans, look no further. La Dispute has all you’re looking for, and more.
Be sure to stay up to date with what they are doing here!