Edited by Anna Mengani
It’s February 25th, and following a four-hour road trip from Orlando to Tallahassee, and a quick Redbull shotgun, I walk into the tiny backroom of a small gay bar in Florida’s capital city. The room is backed with people, all standing in anticipation for the second to last show of Flipturn’s Shadowglow tour at the 926 Bar. As their friends, Hotel Fiction, open the night with incredible indie rock, the crowd is already energized and ready for Flipturn.
As the lights go out, the sold-out show is ready to bring the energy and help close out a memorable tour. As the band of five walk out onto the stage, the room fills with screams and yells; bouncing off every corner and wall. The lead singer, Dillon Basse, shares wide eyes with his friends/bandmates as they realize just how many people are squeezed into this small room. Their drummer, Devon VonBalson, counts them off as they go into their first song 'The Fall’. The crowd goes crazy as they hear the familiar opening riff and the band jumps into action, from the second they start playing, I don’t think Basse’s feet stay on the floor once. The energy in the room is contagious as people scream the lyrics back and live in the moment; as the song ends VonBalson is dripping in sweat, showing just how passionate he is about the music he’s playing and the people he’s playing it with and for. Throughout the show, the energy continues to get better and better, to the point that the crowd is sometimes louder than the band themselves. Screaming lyrics to songs at the top of their lungs, leaving the band speechless and amazed that this is happening.
At some point in the night, I left this small room to use the bathroom in the main bar and the temperature difference between the back room and the main bar was significantly different. When I walked back into the room, my glasses instantly fogged up from how hot it was in the room and how much movement was going on inside, a fellow crowd member took my glasses and wiped the fog off on her shirt, showing just how much of a community Flipturn has created. As the band kicks up their song ‘Halfway’, a song about an incredibly rough relationship and an impulsive decision, the crowd goes wild screaming a chorus of "And I did not love you, and I'm well aware/ Maybe I used you but I was almost there” back to the stage, echoing every word sung by Basse.
As the night closes out with a cover of ‘Everybody Wants to Rule the World’ and Flipturn classics like ‘August’ and ‘Nickels,' the bittersweet sound of an almost sold-out tour comes to an end. You can find Flipturn’s latest album Shadowglow below and you can catch them in Jacksonville for their two hometown shows in June!
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