03/29 Beachland Ballroom in Cleveland, OH
03/30 World Café Live in Philadelphia, PA
03/31 Gramercy Theatre in New York, NY
04/01 Sinclair in Boston, MA
04/02 Hamilton in Washington, DC
04/05 Off Broadway in St. Louis, MO
04/06 George’s Majestic in Fayetteville, AR
04/07 Granada Theater in Dallas, TX
04/08 Parish Room in Austin, TX
04/09 Warehouse Live Studio in Houston, TX
04/13 Common Grounds in Waco, TX
04/14 Cain’s Ballroom in Tulsa, OK
04/15 Waiting Room in Omaha, NE
04/16 Gothic Theatre in Englewood, CO
04/26 Complex in Salt Lake City, UT
04/19 Loft in La Jolla, CA
04/20 Troubadour in West Hollywood, CA
04/21 Chapel in San Francisco, CA
04/22 Doug Fir Lounge in Portland, OR
04/23 Crocodile in Seattle, WA
04/24 Hi-Fi Music Hall in Eugene, OR
04/26 Complex in Salt Lake City, UT
05/20-05/22 Hangout Festival in Gulf Shores, AL
06/09-06/12 @ Bonnaroo in Manchester, AL
The folk/rock/Americana band’s new album is called Folk Hop N Roll. I thought that was a clever name but didn't really quite know how it would fit into the music. I mean, how could you mix folk, hip-hop and rock &roll music into one thing? Well, these guys were able to mix all of those genres and make it sound damn good. As the singer said, they take the heartbeat of hip-hop, the dirtiness of rock & roll, and pull it all together with the soul and beauty of folk music. After he explained that, something clicked with me. I had fallen in love with the way they explained their music and because of that, I completely fell in love with their music because I understood and more than appreciated what they were trying to do.
The instrumentation of the band mocked something like Mumford & Sons. They had a banjo, mandolin, guitar, bass, keys, and drums. I absolutely adore bands that use traditional instruments but do their own thing with them. For example, there were times where the banjo had so much distortion on it that I would have sworn it was just another guitar in the background.
All of the music was upbeat and made you want to dance. The lyrics were positive and you couldn't help but smile when you actually listened to them. The feeling that the band gave off to the crowd was nothing short of pure positive vibes. I'm not saying that the shows I usually go to are negative feeling, because they aren't, but last night's show gave me a completely different feeling than the many metal shows I go to a week. I felt happy and optimistic. I wasn't fearing for my life and I didn't care if I looked like an idiot while doing my "hippie dance"
Judah & the Lion had one of the most energetic shows I've seen for a band like this. Their music was much more high energy live than on CD and their live show blew me away. At one point the singer had made his way into the crowd where he proceeded to wander around all over the place. I've noticed more and more bands doing this and I think it's a great way for bands to amp up the crowd. It's just such a different thing when a band like this does it versus when a band like Being As An Ocean does it. Last night I saw Being As An Ocean, Joel, the singer, jumped into the crowd and was immediately greeted by a mosh pit. Last night, people got out of the singer's way so he could make his way through the crowd.
Judah & the Lion played a little bit of their old material but really focused on their new album. It was hard to tell the difference though because they have such a distinctive sound. The old and new songs seemed to blend together musically but in the best possible way.
The Saint Johns
The Saint Johns were a great opener for Judah & the Lion. Although it was immensely calmer than what was to come, it was just as beautiful and had just as much feeling and chutzpah as the headliner.
If you can, I highly suggest you check this tour out. I promise it's worth your time!
Judah & the Lion at Varsity Theater, Minneapolis (26 March 2016)