>> That Wednesday started out like any other. I woke up, went to work, wrote about biology, dealt with my pain-in-the-ass boss and spent a decent amount of time Googling miscellaneous things like “When did Jerry Garcia die?” and “Rolling Stone top 100 Guitarists” for the millionth time.
It was somehow different, though. For one, I was feeling rambunctious. Secondly, I heard on my drive home that The 1975 were playing their second show at the Rapids Theatre in Niagara Falls that night. I didn’t realize they’d played a first show. Feeling almost embarrassed for myself, I quickly found tickets.
Anyway, as this ticket purchase is all transpiring - and little to my knowledge - the two openers had already gone on. They’d decided to move everything forward an hour. So I left my place in a frenzy – well, dressed in black head to toe, really. Trust me when I tell you it is an absolute and painful schlep to the weird town of Niagara Falls.
I should mention now that one of my first-ever writing gigs while I was working back in LA was a short bio on The 1975. I remember seeing their “Chocolate” video on a JetBlue flight as a promotional-type thing at the time and getting hooked. This was years ago; up until now, I’d never had the chance to see them live.
They were incredible. I probably sound like -- and certainly at the time acted like -- a sixteen year old, desperate for Matt Healy. The only difference is that I’m 26.
I grabbed a drink at one point and bolted to the front, leaving Sammi (my sister) behind. She was cool with it. Everyone knows it’s easier to push through crowds when you’re alone and can make up bullshit like, “Sorry guys, gotta write an article about the show!” It worked.
From an artistic standpoint, and in all seriousness, the sound was really quite impressive. The drummer is incredible: funky and groovy and every other adjective that goes along with “cool.” At one point, Matthew asked everyone to put their phones away. “I mean that in the least belittling way,” he added. I guess he wanted us to appreciate things. So we did. They played “Me” and yeah, pretty solid.
The setlist went on to include most of their new record with a few older ones thrown in. I can’t think of another word for the performance other than “purposeful;” as a band, they’re quite intent on their music. Then “Sex” started and I jumped around and flung my hair every which way. I even asked some dude to put me on his shoulders so I could get a photo. He did. Thanks, Kevin.
It all went so quick and before I knew it we were out back hanging with some of my beloved musician friends while I tried to find someone who could get me a word or two with Mr. Healy. A little finesse and a lotta kindness almost worked, but one of the important dudes hanging around told me they booked ass off stage and into their bus, New York bound.
Til next time, boys. <<