Fidlar is one of those bands that I will never a chance to see live. They’re just so fun and electric and are one of those bands that can make you forget any troubles that may be plaguing you within just a song. Yes, that means if they play one of my least favorite venues in town, sell out and get sponsored by one of my least favorite radio station, and play a show in front of people who are just there to hear “that one song” I will still there bright eyed and bushy tailed.
Friday night’s show started off with an awkward introduction from two local radio personalities. After rattling off the sponsors (McDonald’s and Audi Saint Paul/ Minneapolis), they went on to ask who was excited to see Fidlar. The crowd erupted but I was confused, there was still a local band to get through and I, for one, was overly excited to see them. After a short pause, the two on stage finally introduced the local band with a bit less enthusiasm than they had when they had asked who was ready for the headliner. Okay, yeah, I was annoyed but that’s radio for you and France Camp, the local who was opening the show, didn’t seem to mind and even poked jokes at the sell-out factor of the show.
The last time I saw France Camp was last March when they opened for Acid Dad. They were great then but even better last night. Maybe it was the extravagant lights or the way the audience, although clueless, was eating up every single word. Regardless, France Camp is just a true gem of the Minneapolis music scene that hasn’t gotten the recognition they deserve in the past but I see that quickly changing. Their California garage rock vibes seem completely out of place for a Minnesota band currently in the thralls of winter but they do it so perfectly. Their upbeat and bouncey yet intense songs were the perfect soundtrack to get the young audience moving and warmed up for what was to come.
France Camp was clearly having fun with their set which added a sense of charm that Fidlar would continue with throughout the night. At one point they introduced themselves as McFrance Camp just to poke fun at the banners advertising the sponsors throughout the venue. A failed crowd surfing attempt by the singer where the in-experienced audience turned him over on his stomach (while playing guitar mind you) and then set him on the ground turned into a dance party on the floor that had the sound guys scrambling to figure out the cords and what not. France Camp’s set was short, sweet, quirky and definitely memorable. It ended with an introduction to Kyle on bass but nothing more. Again, awkward, quirky, but oh so much fun. France Camp was the best local band that could have been put onto this bill.
Before I knew it, Fidlar was taking the stage and the erupted into deafening cheers. I stood there waiting impatiently for the band to jump into their first thing just thinking about how amazing it is that they have gotten so big. I remember the first time I stumbled into their show. There was definitely a crowd that night but not like this. It was more people like me who were just curious and bored that ended up falling in love with the band and their music. Now look at them, playing a sold out sponsored show at First Avenue in front of an excited crowd. Yeah, I may have been annoyed at the fact we were at Fine Line and that they completely sold out by playing a “Go Show” (the radio station is called Go) but I was seriously so happy to see them perform that I really didn’t give a shit about anything else.
Even with a new album out that I felt fell a bit flat compared to their old stuff, Fidlar did a great job of mixing old with new while focusing on the old. It was hit after hit and I found myself singing along to song after song as the crowd turned into a sweaty mess. Although a lot of the audience was just there to hear “that one song” that I’m sure Go has been spinning non-stop hence the sponsorship, there were plenty of people singing along to every single word of every single song with a giant smile on their face. The energy in the room was electric and even if you were just waiting for that one song, it was impossible to not get lost in it all. The pit was playful but intense. I hugged the wall just so I could watch everything unfold and nodded at the people that were spit out of the pit just to catch their breath and then go back in. People were rowdy and ready to party but the atmosphere stayed light-hearted and fun throughout Fidlar’s entire set.
My favorite part of Fidlar’s set was definitely during one of my favorite songs “40oz. On Repeat”. Almost a pity-party of a song with lyrics like “Because everybody’s got somebody, everybody but me. Why can’t anybody just tell me that I’m somebody’s?” it’s definitely in my top five from this band. I was interested to see what they would do when the line about selling out comes up. I mean, here’s this band that sings about never selling out but now they are playing this Go Show sponsored by Audi and McDonald’s. I’ve always been struck by the members’ personalities that shine without any effort so I was waiting to see what they would do here. I mean, they weren’t just going to let it slide right? “And I’ll just scream and shout, that I’ll never sell out/ I’ll never sell out, man!/ Wait, how much?” Pause. “Yeah, so what. We sold out!” Shouted the singer with a smile on his face. I don’t know if many people caught it and I know it was such a small moment of an amazing night but that split second had me laughing uncontrollably and falling in love a little bit more with this band (which I honestly didn’t think was possible).
Last night was short and sweet and before I knew it, the show was over and I was heading back home with a giant smile on my face. Fidlar will forever be one of my favorite bands to catch live.
Venue: Fine Line
Sausage Fest Meter- 7 out of 10
Average Age of the Crowd- 22
Crowd Surfers- 13 Counted But There Were Probably More
Mosh-Ability- 7 out of 10
Stage Divers- None
Broken Bones- 0
Spotted Flying Through The Air- Nothing
Drunkards Taken Out By Security- 0
Celebrity Sightings- None
Overall Score- 8.1 out of 10
Show on Deck- Echoes of the Fallen/ Plague of Stars/ Krawg/ Witchden
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