The Lumineers had a very special couple of nights in New York City. As part of their world tour supporting Cleopatra, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, the folk rockers sold out Thursday (Feb. 2) and Friday (Feb. 3) at Madison Square Garden.
After opening with “Submarines,” the third track off their self-titled, debut album, lead singer Wesley Schultz explained to the crowd that he and other founding member, Jeremiah Fraites, grew up only 12 miles away from the famed arena. “I saw one of my first concerts here, so tonight is a really special night for us. Thank you for being here,” said Schultz.
All of the band members abandoned their stationary instruments to join Schultz at the front of the stage for their smash “Ho Hey” somewhat surprisingly early in the set, during which the voices of people singing along echoed throughout the Garden beautifully. Following “Ho Hey,” Schultz dedicated the title track “Cleopatra” to the all of the women who participated in the Women’s March on Jan. 21, including his mother and sister.
This wasn’t the only time the band worked a political remark or two into its set — but it was all done without calling out any specific names. Before performing “Charlie Boy” on an elevated spectacle of a B-stage in the middle of the arena, Schultz reminded the audience that regardless of who’s in charge of the country, whatever they say “means a lot” and we should be conscious of it.
While the Lumineers may not play the most uptempo music, they certainly kept the audience on their toes (and made it impossible not to pull your phone out and put every second up as Instagram stories) with their mesmerizing lighting and the previously mentioned dynamic B-stage. Images and colors were constantly projected onto their backdrop, which had six illuminated chandeliers hanging that resembled organ pipes. At one point, Schultz even jumped off the stage and went into the crowd — fearlessly hurdling over seats — in the middle of the set.
Overall, the Lumineers put on a show that was equal parts heartfelt and exciting. Check out the rest of their tour dates and get tickets here.