“Emotional Roadshow” is the greatest way to describe a Twenty One Pilots concert.
In the span of a few hours, fans feel so much: anxiety as they wait for the band, joy as the duo finally walks on stage, sorrow as singer Tyler Joseph sits at the piano for the emotional songs, freedom as every problem is forgotten and their minds are buzzing with song lyrics.
The first opening act, Chef’Special, impressed many of the concertgoers with their set. The funky pop beats worthy of being overplayed on the radio and catchy lyrics had the crowd jumping and cheering them on; their energy pumping and preparing for the main attraction’s arrival.
The second opening act, MUTEMATH, left concertgoers awestruck with their awesome lightshow that was seamlessly synchronized to their music. The smooth voice of lead singer Paul Meany calmed the overwhelmed fans while allowing their excitement to bubble.
Humming: it was all that fans heard for over twenty minutes. A curtain was dropped. A red light cast faint shadows from behind. Some fans swore the humming was growing louder with time.
After what seemed like an eternity the curtain disappeared and the intro to “Fairly Local” initiated the screams of the infamous lyric—“The few, the proud, and the emotional.”
The intro bled into one of my favorite songs: HeavyDirtySoul. This is when the concert really started and fans began to realize this was reality and their favorite band is truly performing live in the same room as them.
There is no way to properly describe the emotions of being there in the moment. It’s a unique experience; it was only my second concert, but it was my favorite.
Before the concert started I made friends with two girls in the seats behind me. We swore we would cry as soon as we heard Tyler’s voice or heard the kick of Josh’s drums. I really thought I would cry; I cried at the One Direction concert, and I loved Twenty One Pilots way more.
Why wouldn’t I cry?
I should’ve cried.
But I didn’t
I couldn’t bring myself to cry. Something about seeing Tyler bounce around the stage, seeing Josh put his whole body and soul into his drumming, seeing two best friends living out their dream of making people happy with their music, seeing how comfortable and free everyone felt just wouldn’t let me release those tears I knew I was subconsciously holding.
A week later I’m forced to deal with what I feel. I’m not sure how I felt at the concert.
I was happy. I’m watching my favorite band in amazing seats with amazing friends—new and old.
I was sad. The meanings of the songs hit me harder than ever. My best friend isn’t standing next to me. I’m alone, but there’s so many people around me feeling what I’m feeling in the moment.
Then, I was numb. Everything that was hurting me, warping my mind, making my heart ache was suddenly gone. All I felt was the beat of the drums pushing my heart to its limits, the vibration of a voice moving my body, the crashing of feet against the stands, the unity of fist pumping and screams.
I still feel it.
The beat of the drums is resonating deep within my soul. It continues to pump my heart. The drums have always been my favorite part.
A week later, my soul is freezing. The world is ugly. The only moment I’m not listening to music is when I’m sleeping.
A week later, I want to cry and scream. I want to let go the way I let go that night. I want to scream louder than I did.
A week later, it is obvious I didn’t let myself go like I thought I did.
Because a week later, the tears are finally brimming my eyes as I think of July 2, 2016 when Tyler Joseph asked his fans, his friends, his family to stay alive.
July 2, 2016 when he sang: I’m a goner. Somebody catch my breath.
July 2, 2016 when Joshua Dun performed an act greater than simple drumming.
July 2, 2016 when he urged my heart to beat on.