The Kills Make a Frenetic Return to Minneapolis

The Kills by James Perovich

Last updated on March 11th, 2024 at 12:22 pm

Alison Mosshart is a badass. 

The Kills, photographed by James Perovich

I have always been a fan of her voice—particularly in her work with The Kills and with Jack White in The Dead Weather.  But what made me fall in love with her as a person was her raw and real portrayal in Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown in 2016. 

In the episode, Bourdain visited the city of Nashville, Tennessee, and Mosshart appeared with her chef brother. I was impressed with how open she was about both her music and her life on the road as an artist. 

The Kills, photographed by James Perovich

The tribute she wrote for Bourdain after he died was incredibly poignant and sad. I encourage everyone to read it, even if you were only a minor admirer of the celebrity chef. (But, let’s face it, if you knew who he was, you loved the man because you strangely felt like you knew him.) 

That raw emotion is what makes Mosshart’s lyrics and The Kills’ music so gratifying. There are no fluff songs. Both the vocalist and her bandmate Jamie Hince write all of the songs. It was incredible to witness just the two of them on this God Games tour, layering percussive elements and samples with a Mellotron, backing tracks, and plain old guitar fireworks. 

The Kills, photographed by James Perovich

Both Mosshart and Hince use their bodies to emote feelings while performing. She puts her entire body into her performance, flipping and throwing her hair to the beat, while he is more mechanical in his movements to balance his bandmate’s thrashing activities. Each of them got on their knees at times during the show. 

The Kills, photographed by James Perovich

As a fellow 45-year-old woman, I’m impressed with how agile and acrobatic Mosshart is. I also admire how much she interacts with the crowd, pointing, nodding, raising her eyebrows, crossing her arms, and making eye contact with fans. It seemed to keep everyone at the sold-out show engaged. 

Mosshart and Hince also connect with each other while performing. The singer often turns to admire the guitarist’s playing abilities—and they shared a huge hug after wrapping up “Tape Song.” 

The Kills, photographed by James Perovich

It’s impressive to watch Hince play his guitars so well, especially knowing he has had six hand surgeries and is nearly unable to move his left middle finger after slamming his hand in a car door about nine years ago. He adds pieces to his guitars to play and mix the band’s music. 

The Kills, photographed by James Perovich

When the duo was finished with their hit song “Doing It To Death,” Hince approached Mosshart and gave her multiple kisses on both cheeks and lips. It was an intimate gesture between two artists who clearly enjoy performing live together. 

To start the night, the Paranoyds laid the groundwork for The Kills and said they were excited to play on the First Avenue stage. They have played the 7th Street Entry a handful of times and seemed in awe of the opportunity to showcase their music “on the big stage” with a large audience, exclaiming, “This is a rager!” 

The Paranoyds rock
The Paranoyds, photographed by James Perovich

It’s unclear if it was intentional or not, but knowing that Valentine’s Day is this week, I found it cute that three of the band members were all wearing some form of pink or red. The rock foursome hail from L.A. and looked every bit the part. Their upbeat tunes and rotating lead vocals made for an energetic aperitif. 

The Paranoyds, photographed by James Perovich

All in all, The Kills delivered an intense and high-energy performance for their return to Minneapolis, and I hope that it’s not another two decades before they revisit our state. 

The Kills, photographed by James Perovich

However long it is, though, I know Alison Mosshart will still be rocking and thrashing her way through some energetic dance moves while transmitting her melodies. 

The Kills, photographed by James Perovich

Setlist for The Kills

  • Kissy Kissy
  • U.R.A. Fever
  • New York
  • Going to Heaven
  • Love and Tenderness
  • 103
  • God Games
  • Tape Song
  • Baby Says
  • Black Balloon
  • Wasterpiece
  • Kingdom Come
  • Pull A U
  • LA Hex
  • Doing It to Death
  • Future Starts Slow


  • No Wow
  • Better Days
  • Sour Cherry
  • Fried My Little Brains

Written by Wendy Nielsen


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