Thirty Seconds to Mars brought their “Monolith Tour” to St. Louis last night as they performed for 105.7 the Point’s “Big Summer Show” at Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre. The band was joined by special guests, Welshly Arms, K. Flay, and Walk the Moon. The night was filled with a type of special energy that concerts can rarely achieve.
Welshly Arms was first up. The sounds of the Old West set the scene as the band took the stage and began to play “All the Way Up.” Although originally from Cleveland, Ohio, the six person band sounded like they grew up in the heart of Memphis, Tennessee. The group drew heavily on the blues to create their old school sound and had the the crowd grooving along through the set, creating the perfect atmosphere to build upon. Frontman, Sam Getz, yelled out a raspy, “I know it’s a Monday, but that don’t mean we can’t party” and he was right. If this was just the beginning it was clear that the rest of the night would be special. The band continued to rock through their set with “Sanctuary” and “Down to the River” which showed off the grittiness of the band, supported by the soulful voice of band member, Bri Bryant. The band wrapped up their set and it was apparent that they are just getting started.
Next up was K. Flay who started her set with “Make Me Fade” and “Giver.” Dressed in a white t-shirt and shorts, she gave off a type of relatable angst that made the crowd want to focus in on the moment. Her creative alternative/hip-hop style and relaxed demeanor set her into a category with Paramore’s Hayley Williams and Halsey. She later performed “Can’t Sleep” which was dedicated to her mom. By the time she performed “Blood in the Cut” the anticipation had built tremendously. By the time K. Flay ended her set with “Slow March” she had shown the crowd exactly why she was nominated for two Grammys this year: Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical (for Every Where Is Some Where), and Best Rock Song (for “Blood in the Cut”).
After a short break for a set change, it was time for Walk the Moon. The Lion King’s “Circle of Life” echoed through the amphitheatre as the band walked out, decked out in their signature face paint and eclectic attire. Purple lights and smoke absorbed the stage as the band started their set with “One Foot.” The colorful lights and buzzing energy continued as the band played hit after hit, including “Portugal” and “Different Colors” which the band dedicated to all of the places they’ve been. Lead singer, Nick Petricca, said, “it shows us how important it is that everyone is different.” The band then played “Surrender” which was just released in in October of last year. The band brought the fun as they taught the crowd a few choreographed dance moves as they performed “Tightrope.” Walk the Moon is known for their 80s swaying experimental dance anthems, including their first big song, “Shut Up and Dance.” The moment the first notes began to play, the crowd was up out of their seats and dancing. They ended their set with “Anna Sun” and screams overtook the audience. Although it was a Monday, the atmosphere felt like the craziest of Friday nights.
From the very moment Thirty Seconds to Mars began, the arena was vibrating with screams.The stage went black as “Monolith” began to ring out and fans flew Thirty Seconds to Mars flags. A box of colored screens began to light up and move as the intensity built, waiting for Jared Leto to take the stage. As the band began to play “Up In the Air” it was clear that the arena was full of dedicated fans. It was arguably the loudest show the amphitheatre has experienced this summer, and the deafening sounds of the crowd only continued to elevate as the band played “Kings and Queens.” The stage was backlit in a golden glow by the end of the 2009 hit and the base beat into the souls of the audience members. Later, as “This Is War” began to play, fists shot up and the crowd chanted along “THIS IS WAR. THIS IS WAR.” The sound of thousands singing along to the lyrics, “the war is won, it’s a brave new world” portrayed a sense of strength and passion that enveloped each person in an almost spiritual experience. Giant balloons flooded the crowd as the band continued through their set, joking with the crowd about the heat and playing songs like “Dangerous Night” and “Do Or Die.”
Leto knew how to engage the crowd as he established a war between the left and the right for “loudest side” as well as a dance battle on stage with a few lucky fans. The night seemed to fly by and before long, the band was playing 2005 mega-hit, “The Kill (Bury Me).” Leto rose above the stage, performing the song from the colorful platform box that turned from red to a blinding white at peak moments in the song. Thirty Seconds then finished their set with “Walk on Water” and “Closer to the Edge” during which, Leto called out to the crowd, asking for hundreds of people to join him on stage for the final moments of the night. The entire night was focused around the fans, and caused a type of emotion from the crowd that you rarely see at a concert. Looking out into the great abyss of the crowd, Jared Leto said, “I promise we will not forget this night for as long as we live.” After last night, it’s clear. Neither will St. Louis, Jared. Neither will we.
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