Concert Review: Passion Pit at First Avenue (Minneapolis, MN)

Passion Pit (Cambridge, MA)
October 29th, 2012
First Avenue in Minneapolis, MN

To the unfamiliar, it’s easy to write off Passion Pit as a trendy dance band best left to the barely legal and aging hipsters of the world to admire. However, those who know better recognize the depth, heaviness and sincerity woven through Passion Pit’s carefully crafted pop songs. The writer and main composer of these anthems, Michael Angelakos, has been through his share of trials and tribulations over the years. It’s a safe bet that his open battle with Bipolar Disorder has served as an inspiration for his work and, consequently, paid off big time. In this case, tortured artist- for the win!

Angelakos and the band played two sold out nights in First Avenue’s Main Room on Oct. 29 and 30. The first, an all-ages show, was heavily attended by both budding scenester kids and veteran concert-goers. The second, had more of a cooler-than-cool vibe but that’s expected for a beloved electro-pop band.  

Starting things on a high note, Passion Pit played their first single from Gossamer (and highlight of a recent Taco Bell advertising campaign) “Take A Walk.” The excitement flowed nicely into “The Reeling” from the band’s first full-length album, “Manners.” The pattern of new songs placed alongside the old, mixed seamlessly throughout the band’s set.

During “It’s Not My Fault I’m Happy” the crowd participated in what could be described as ‘group clap therapy.’ “I’m just working with what I’ve been given/ It’s not my fault I’m happy/ Don’t call me crazy I’m happy,” Angelakos sings. When combined with the equally charged “I’ll Be Alright,” it feels like we all had a nice break-through.

“Constant Conversations” is an absolute stand out on Gossamer and even more so when performed live. As the lyrics detail a dark point in Angelako’s relationship, it’s as if we are watching the scene unfold. With perspective, he croons:  “Now you’re standing in the kitchen/and you’re pouring out my drink/And there’s a very obvious difference/And it’s that one of us can think/If there is a bump in the road yea you’d fix it/But for me I just come off the road/But tonight you’ve got me cornered/And I haven’t got a place to go.” Both sides of this picture are painfully relatable.

And while that may be among the more poignant parts of the concert, the most fun came moments later.

During “Sleepyhead,” a crowd favorite from the band’s “Chunk of Change” release, streamers exploded above the head’s of the main floor dance party. It was pure fun and the enthusiasm sky-rocketed. And despite a minor technical set back, the encore performances of “Moth’s Wings” and “Little Secrets” left the sweaty crowd wanting more.

Set List:
Take A Walk
The Reeling
To Kingdom Come
It’s Not My Fault I’m Happy
Carried Away
Better Things
Let Your Love Grow Tall
Constant Conversations
Mirrored Sea
Live To Tell The Tale
Folds In Your Hands
Love Is Greed
I’ll Be Alright
Sleepyhead

Moth’s Wings
Little Secrets

 

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