I can remember watching the Future Islands performance on Letterman a few years ago and thinking, “This HAS to be an act for TV.” Clearly, I was wrong. Although the Baltimore band formed in 2006, they were unknown to me (and to most of the world) until that moment in March 2014, but they’ve been making waves ever since then. When we heard that their Mercury show was going to be the same night as U2, we were super bummed, having already gotten tickets to be up close with Bono. BUT it all worked out in the end, and we probably had the best night of all.
The evening started out with paying less than $10 for a Taxi 7 ride (compared to the $50+ we would have paid for Uber/Lyft), so it was already a win. The surcharges + security + credit card machines + GA lines all helped sum up the fact that Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium wasn’t really ready for the tens of thousands of fans who showed up for U2. That being said, we magically made our way through the general admission crowd to be about 30 feet away from Bono, so that was amazing. The stage backdrop was mind blowingly huge and the graphics looked spectacular on there. All around us, diehard U2 fans sang along to every song, making it quite the start to the night.
Cut to about 5 or 6 songs in – we started making our way to Mercury, where there was an equally superb crowd ready to hang out with Samuel T. Herring and the Future Islands gang. Seriously – the energy in the room was insane. Throughout the performance, Herring brought out his signature dance moves, guttural bellows, and overall ‘just-a-typical-guy-who-happens-to-be-a-rockstar” persona, driving the crowd absolutely wild. Honestly, I think every dude in that audience (and there were a lot of them) could see themselves in Herring, and they simply could not get enough. As for Aubrey and me, we hit up Taco Bell on the way home, sooooo basically we absolutely nailed that Friday night. ✌️
For more Future Islands photos, head over to Flickr: