Friday night, Allen and I went to a concert in Columbus, Ohio. One we'd been waiting months for: The Black Keys, with opening band Cage the Elephant. We had seen The Keys play before - a week before we got engaged in 2012 - and knew they would put on a hell of a show. The fact that we were getting to see the high-energy rockers Cage the Elephant was just icing on the cake of what we hoped would be a great show.
And of course, it was a great show. The performances were exactly what we expected and more. Cage the Elephant opened with the same high energy we experienced at Bunbury, but on a larger scale. The lead singer worked the stage, crowd-surfed quite often and even lost his (corded) microphone. We actually realized during the show that the crowd-surfing and epic dancing is probably why the lead singer of Cage the Elephant doesn't use a cordless mic - it could be lost in all of the energy!
Now Cage did a great job of warming up the crowd for The Black Keys - I just wish they played more! I know opening acts can't go forever, but still - they had a great set. Cage played all of their familiar songs, including 'No Rest for the Wicked," "Shake me Down," and "Come a Little Closer." It was really nice to have songs we could sing along to mixed in among the material we weren't quite familiar with in Cage's set. By the time they left the stage, I was excited to keep rockin' the night away.
By the time the Black Keys started performing the arena was packed. Filled to the brim with music fans. One giant family under one very large roof, singing along to all of our favorite songs. They started out the set with "All the Way" and continued to bring down the house for over an hour. An hour that flew by entirely too quickly. They played songs familar to most, including "Gold on the Ceiling" and "Lonely Boy" along with covers and a song they said hadn't been played by them live since 2002. Which they rocked. The end of their show came about entirely too quickly, and before we knew it, we were sitting in a darkened arena, listening to everyone cheer, clap, and call out for an encore.
While we waited for the Keys to come back to the stage, we realized just how amazing the show was, solely by the call for the encore. The crowd's roar was deafening as it reverberated around the walls and dome of the arena, and in the pitch-black darkness and thundering applause, the LED's on hundreds of cell phones came on, illuminating the darkness. It was... pretty awesome.
Of course, the Keys came back to the stage for an encore that was just incredible. This is a band that knows their fans, what they want, and what they like. At this concert, there was a good bit of intimacy, though we were just two of thousands there. When everyone sang along to "Little Black Submarines" it was awesome. I was really sad when the concert was over, but oh so happy we decided to go, because man, those guys know how to rock. Our whole night was full of energy, great music, and tons of fun.
If you have the opportunity to go to see The Black Keys this autumn, I highly encourage you do. They will not disappoint - I promise!