It’s amazing how single album bands like The Lumineers, Foster the People, Head and the Heart, etc. can go from playing tiny venues one month to playing arenas and sold out festivals by the time the calendar rolls around. The Lumineers did exactly that. Just a year ago they were playing 7th Street Entry for a couple hundred people and could only dream about playing the Target Center just across the street. That dream came true Friday night as the massive flock of fans flooded into the home of the Timberwolves to see their favorite pop-folk rockers.
It was evident how overjoyed the band was to be playing on the hardwood. Lead singer Wesley Schultz admitted “he had always dreamed of being a basketball player and told his mom that one day he would make it onto the courts of professional basketball – he just never dreamed it would be like this.”
The crowd was hyped to the max to be spending the evening with the Denver based crew. It was made apparent by the groups of screaming girls down by the photo pit to the echoes of the crowd singing along to every song. As predicted they played their entire debut album but threw some curveballs in with covers of Bob Dylan’s “Subterranean Homesick Blues” and Talking Heads’ “This Must be the Place”. Their choice of covers were well placed and excellent choices for the band’s sound. They made them their own and to the unknowing listener, you’d think they were The Lumineers’ original work.
The group even made their way out into the middle of the general admission crowd to perform a few songs (including a new one, “Gun Song”) more intimately – if that is even possible in a venue that large. Wesley continually insisted everybody put their phones away because “they want people to be present at their shows.” As you could imagine, telling a sea of screaming kids to put their phones away doesn’t exactly go too well… the band carried on anyway.
The highlight of the show had to be a new tune simply entitled “The Duet” performed by Wes and cellist Neyla Pekarek. The passion and feeling in the song seemed sincere and it created a nice moment on stage.
The Cold War Kids and J. Roddy Walston and the Business were excellent choices of openers and two of the bands’ personal favorite acts at the moment. Since I always go into shows with lower expectations for bands with only one hit album, The Lumineers exceeded every single one of them. They put on a complete show worthy of any fan’s dollar bills. The times of seeing small intimate shows from these folks are probably over but their show is still worth checking out. Their tour continues through summer and I urge you to go grab a ticket or two and spend a night with these lovely musicians.