April 15, 2009
3OH!3 photo by Sarah Cass
On April 10th in St. Paul, it was indeed a 'Good Friday' as the Alternative Press Tour made its stop at Station 4. The tour buses got in town around noon and the crowd quickly grew. Despite doors being opened at 5pm, a line stretches across 4th Street, full of concert-goers anxiously waiting to get in hours in advance, some got there as early as 2pm.
The AP Tour was sold out months in advance. With an all-star line up this year, it was not hard to do. A Rocket to the Moon, Hit The Lights, The Maine, and co-headliners Family Force 5 and 3OH!3 were the five amazing bands that made up this year's AP Tour.
With the current success of 3OH!3 hitting the top 40 charts, this tour was guaranteed to bring in the masses. With previous stops at various House of Blues locations all across the nation, with capacities of 2,000 people, Station 4 was one of the smallest venues on the stop of the AP tour topping out at a little over 700 people. To accommodate such a large crowd all of Station 4 was opened to all ages, which normally has a bar section only opened to people ages 21+ even at an all ages show. No alcohol was served during the show due to it being an all ages show throughout the venue. That didn't seem to pose a problem though since only about 10 attendants out of the 700+ kids were of age.
With so many bands and such a small amount of time to play, the show promptly started at 5:30pm with A Rocket To The Moon. A Rocket To The Moon is a solo project lead by a guy name Nick Santino, but when he's on tour he also travels with a full band. Next on the line up was a band from Ohio, Hit The Lights, which brought a ton of energy to their set. After Hit The Lights played the venue started to feel like a gigantic sauna. As the kids stood jam-packed from wall to wall with sweat dripping from head to toe, pop band The Maine graces the stage and a roar of pre-teen girls filled the venue. By the crowd response The Maine was clearly one of the highly anticipated bands to play that night. With their poppy lyrics and sing-alongs The Maine was very easy to love. Their appearance as a band on stage was very uniform; all five members dressed in skinny jeans and with the color scheme of black and white.
As said earlier the AP Tour was headlined by two bands, Family Force 5 and 3OH!3. Both bands took turns closing the shows and at this show it was Family Force 5's turn to play last. Directly after The Maine cleared off their gear, music started and bass was pumping through the speakers and the two emcees from Colorado began to run on stage. 3OH!3 is made up of two members: Sean Foreman and Nathaniel "Nat" Motte. On Tour they usually just tour with a DJ, but this time around they were accompanied by a full band.
3OH!3's beats began to pound through the system and the crowd went into a frenzy. There was non-stop movement from the crowd from beginning to end of 3OH!3's set. From constant jumping up and down (which reminded me of a House of Pain video) to hand signs waving in the air in the form a "3-O-3". To my surprise the crowd knew all the words to all the 3OH!3's songs. I first figured through the popularity of 3OH!3's appeal would be through mainstream media, most of the fans only knowing the band's single "Don't Trust Me". But since this show was sold out months in advance, the single had not even hit the airwaves yet, thus the crowd that night were full of true fans of 3OH!3 who saw them late last year and at Warped Tour last summer.
3OH!3 delivered what was promised; a sweaty dancing good time. The crowd was not let down and got exactly what they bargained for. It appeared that the majority of the crowd was there for 3OH!3, by the merchandise sold and by the lack of interest of Family Force 5. The lack of interest however could be accredited to the lack of knowledge and awareness of Family Force 5, or they were just pure exhausted from 3OH!3 and the earlier bands. By that time Station 4 was an oven and many made their way outside to cool down. Some of which never went back inside to watch Family Force 5.
Although it was alcohol free and a sweaty barrage of people all inside a very intimate limited space, the entertainment provided was top-notch. This year's line up of the AP Tour has been one of the best yet and I believe it will be very hard to out do it next year. 3OH!3 definitely stole the show and got everyone up and dancing and screaming despite the crowded and very high temperature atmosphere. I am looking forward to see many of these bands again, a lot of which are going to be touring with this year's Vans Warped Tour.