Point North Gets Better
Point North last played here in November of 2019, so it hasn’t been all that long since the band made a stop in the Twin Cities. These guys really caught my attention three months ago at Amsterdam.
Apparently, I wasn’t the only one who they left a lasting impression on, as this time around there is a much bigger fanbase in attendance. I guess three short months was all it took for the reaction from the crowd to build.
Opening with their (best) song “Never Coming Home” they don’t fail to start the night off right.
They don’t sell us short at the ending either, as frontman, Jon Ludin, calls Point North fans to the barricade and sings the entirety of the last song up close and personal from the photo pit.
Belmont Brings the Bounce
Likewise, Belmont is another band whose fanbase has grown since I last saw them. But in comparison, I find that my reaction isn’t quite as positive.
It’s not that Belmont doesn’t deserve to play bigger stages, but it definitely feels like they are more at home when they’re playing somewhere a little bit smaller.
Seeing them at The GARAGE in September 2019 was honestly more enjoyable because, let’s face it, no one does grungey punk shows better.
Don’t get me wrong, the Belmont guys are still bringing that same beloved energy that caught my eye four months ago, but without a bunch of rowdy punk kids packed into a room crowd surfing and stage diving, it just doesn’t quite feel right.
Setting my own biases aside, the guys do put on an incredible show, complete with a tasteful amount of punk-rock jump kicks.
An Apology to Set It Off
I’ll be honest in saying that Set It Off was the group I was least looking forward to seeing on this lineup. It’s nothing personal, they’re just a band for whom I never really hopped on the bandwagon. Boy, was I wrong to assume I’d have a bad time.
This speaks volumes, as I left their set feeling like I had made a mistake in not giving them a chance sooner. I can’t even pretend like these guys didn’t captivate the audience, myself included, during their performance.
Let’s just count this article as an open apology to the band, as well as a lesson as to why attending a healthy mix of live shows is so critical – you never know what you’ll find!
One song in particular that deserves some attention is “No Disrespect,” which includes perfected vocal harmonies and an undeniably catchy beat. I’m already invested in this thing by the end of the first verse but it just keeps getting better.
Soon, frontman, Cody Carson, jumps on the keyboards halfway through this song, giving it an unexpected but welcome change of pace. As if that’s not enough, he then directs the crowd to put their arms around each other and bounce left and right. I can’t see a single person who isn’t thoroughly enjoying themselves.
The set continues on with high energy from Set It Off and an obvious adoration from their fans. Toward the end, during “Killer in the Mirror,” Carson stands on top of the center of the crowd as they hoist him up. I’m impressed.
Sleeping With Sirens
Sleeping With Sirens is the group that never fails to bring out the emo kid in me, no matter how much time has passed since I’ve listened to them.
I haven’t followed them too closely in a while but, after hearing that they seemed to be getting back to their roots, I was interested in what the new record would hold.
In an interview with Loudwire, frontman, Kellin Quinn expressed his reasoning for getting back to the band’s heavier roots with this album. One of the reasons was that he didn’t quite feel like himself with the messages they were sending in the album prior.
This makes sense since they were making music with more positive messages when, in reality, most fans don’t turn to Sleeping With Sirens when they’re in need of motivation.
Those people were missing out on the bigger picture, and the biggest picture is this; music is freedom.-Kellin Quinn
They start their set with the first two songs off of the new album, and it immediately feels like home. Sleeping With Sirens, if you’re reading this right now, you did it. That is exactly the sound we’ve been looking for.
Though this night is meant for promoting the new album, it isn’t shy of old favorites. A particularly intimate moment for long-time fans is when they slow things down to play an acoustic “James Dean & Audrey Hepburn“.
And of course, no Sleeping With Sirence show would be complete without ending on everyone’s favorite, “If You Can’t Hang,” which sends the entire room into a state of euphoric chaos, but in the best way.
No doubt, I’ll be listening to the new album on repeat and drowning in nostalgia until Sleeping With Sirens come back around!