Twenty One Pilots makes it snow in St. Louis

Live music is absolutely incredible, isn’t it? There is something genuinely remarkable about the way a packed house can produce an energy that transfers from person to person so fluidly. It is unlike almost anything else in this world. It finds ways to bring humans together in a way that — next to probably only food — we have yet to match as a society. Which is why it was so devastating when live shows and events went away for a while. It left us all feeling unrecognizably isolated and alone. It seemed like the days of gathering together to enjoy a common entertainment had vanished… been erased… died. 

However, art is an extremely difficult monster to kill and artistic expression caused by tragedy and pain is even harder to put to rest. One way or another, artists were going to find ways to use this pandemic to continue to express themselves. The one thing that the medium of music, in particular, has always demonstrated so vividly and brilliantly is the resilient attitude of humans and how we can adapt to new challenges and overcome them. The challenges that hit us in 2020 and the years following handed us a lot of heartbreak, but it also gifted us with some of the most introspective creations we had seen in a while. Creations such as the song “Level of Concern” by the artistic duo Twenty One Pilots, who just so happened to make another stop on The Icy Tour in downtown St. Louis at the Enterprise Center on September 10th. 

That night saw a spectacle like no other, performed by a band that was taking every advantage of live music being back in full swing.

Overall, it was a phenomenal performance, with a lengthy two-plus hour runtime that makes the price of admission totally worth it. The Icy Tour is an immense snow-covered marvel that leaves fans around the belly of the arena — or the “nucleus”, as lead singer Tyler Joseph put it — feeling like they all got a front row seat. Tyler ventured out into the crowd quite a few times, starting with a massive jump off stage onto an air mattress right in front of fans in the pit during the second song. 

That was only the beginning, as he would later run up the stairs on both sides of the lower bowl during the song “Ride”, as well as making his way to a piano on a rising platform at the back of the venue where he would perform an acoustic medley of one song from each of the Twenty One Pilots albums, dating back to their debut self-titled record. This was also where one of my favorite events of the night took place during the song “Mulberry Street”; Tyler got each section of the arena to hold up their cell phone flashlights with colored filters that got handed out at specific points in the song, creating a beautiful cascade of color and light that was dancing in tandem with the lyrics “Mulberry Street, so good to see you”. Add in a crowd-surfing ukulele, that infamous red beanie during “Stressed Out” and a crowd supported drum kit for drummer Josh Dunn to rock out a kickass solo during the song “Saturday” and you’ve got yourself a recipe for a show that was so hot, it would melt all the ice right off of The Icy Tour. 

The whole evening was a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence and I couldn’t have been more satisfied as a spectator with the production value of this tour. It gave fans exactly what they needed and that’s really all you can ask for from any band. Tyler and Josh are getting close to wrapping up this tour, so if Twenty One Pilots are bringing The Icy Tour to a city near you, now is the time to see them!

Photography by Thomas Semanco

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