Towson sets ‘Sail’ with AWOLNATION
As soon as junior Crosby Rothey heard about the Homecoming concert lineup, headlined by AWOLNATION with support from twenty one pilots, she made sure to tell her friends, also avid twenty one pilots fans.
They immediately bought their tickets.
“I was so excited, like a lot of my friends were like, ‘I don’t even know who that [twenty one pilots] is.’ But I freaked out because I started listening to them when they were on the Save Rock and Roll Tour with Fall Out Boy,” Rothey, a mass communication and art and design major, said.
Her friends, Erika Johnson and Kaici Lore, drove to Towson on the day of the concert, Oct. 6, from their homes in Fairmount, West Virginia.
Johnson and Lore said that they were not disappointed.
“It was freaking fantastic. Never having been to a concert, especially a twenty one pilots concert and being a massive fan is like amazing,” Lore said.
The musical duo played a set with a mix of upbeat and laid back songs. Their set included songs like “House of Gold,” which featured vocalist Tyler Joseph on the ukulele and songs with greater rap influences like “Car Radio.”
“They’re dancey, and Tyler has a lot of stage presence even though he has social anxiety,” Lore said.
She said that she connects with the band on a personal level.
“I suffer from depression and seizures and I spent a lot of time with self harm and hearing music like that with a good message like ‘you’re not alone,’ it’s nice to hear it,” Lore said. “Especially someone so close because they’re from Ohio so it feels like family.”
Rothey, Johnson and Lore got to experience the band’s performance from the front, where they were able to witness Joseph and drummer Josh Dun’s on-stage tricks such as back flips, a drum battle and other crowd interactions.
Songs like “Fake you Out” and “Holding Onto You” inspired a lot of energy amongst the crowd.
“I loved when Tyler stood on top of the crowd to do ‘Holding Onto You.’ We were right under him, it was awesome,” Johnson said.
Kayle Shepard, a nursing major, said that she was most excited to see twenty one pilots play “Holding Onto You.”
But, she was also looking forward to seeing headliner AWOLNATION.
“We just started listening to them [AWOLNATION] when we heard they were coming here,” Shepard said.
Junior Hunt Paulson went to the show because AWOLNATION is his favorite band. He arrived at SECU Arena about four hours before the concert.
“We want to be in the front row and it’s important to us because it’s like the first tour that the band is doing,” Paulson, a business major said. “In 20 years we are going to remember and be happy that we saw the band in the front row on their first tour.”
Like Rothey, he bought tickets for the show as soon as he heard the lineup announced.
“I bought the ticket like instantly. I was at the gym, saw the poster, left the gym, went and bought the tickets,” Paulson said.
AWOLNATION, an electronic rock band from Los Angeles, played songs from their debut album Megalithic Symphony, including popular songs “Not Your Fault” and 2011 hit “Sail.”
“It’s a fresh sound, the ‘electrictonic-ness’ mixed with the heavy guitar and the rock I just love it,” Paulson said.
Campus Activities Board [CAB] chose AWOLNATION because of their electronic and poppy sounds, CAB Director Chad Nazworth told The Towerlight in an earlier article. During the concert, Nazworth said that the crowd was pumped up after twenty one pilots and that everyone was hyped for AWOLNATION.
“[There have been] no major hiccups, no major glitches. It’s running really smoothly,” he said.
This year’s concert was the first to be held in SECU Arena. Nazworth said that about 1,600 tickets were sold.
“It’s really awesome to have this new space. It brings a new feel to the concert,” Nazworth said.
And Lore said that the show was worth the drive.
“[twenty one pilots] were so much better live than just listening to the CD in the car,” Lore said.
AWOLNATION also strove to connect with the audience. Vocalist Aaron Bruno reached out to the crowd during the performance.
“Have you ever felt like you’re losing your mind ladies and gentleman?” Bruno said. “That’s when you know you’re alive.”