Photos and Review by: Cristina Suciu
Artist: The Lumineers
Date: June 18th, 2022
Location: Forest Hills Stadium- Queens, NY
The Lumineers are back with another hit album, BRIGHTSIDE. With any good album, must come an amazing tour to support it and that’s how we find ourselves on a chilly Saturday night in Queens, NY with openers CAAMP.
To start the night off, CAAMP walked out onto the massive stage, with the lead singer sporting a sick fringe jacket and a cowboy hat- bringing some much needed country vibes to the big city.
The band, whose new album Lavender Days was recently released, opened with “No Sleep,” “Just Wondering,” and “Peach Fuzz,” to get the crowd hyped for the Lumineers later that night. You’d think for just the opening band the crowd would be chatting amongst themselves and waiting for the opening act, but not for CAAMP. As much as there were Lumineers fans in the audience, there were equally CAAMP fans there too. To say the entire pit was singing and dancing along would be an understatement.
CAAMP fans had a special surprise later in the show when they joined The Lumineers on stage for a rendition of Tom Petty’s “Walls.” As the two bands joined voices, the crowd was entranced, and it was nothing short of a dream.
After CAAMP’s final song “Going to the Country,” wrapped up, and an amazing sun set that everyone feared would turn into rain, The Lumineers prepared to hit the stage as “Desperado” rang through the stadium.
Jeremiah Fraites, The Lumineers drummer, rose from the bottom of the stage and began the intro to the title track off of their new album, BRIGHTSIDE. Lead singer, Wesley Shultz, walked on stage with the rest of the band, violinist Lauren Jacobson, pianist Stelth Ulvang, bassist Byron Isaacs, and jack of all trades Brandon Miller.
The crowd was unstoppable as halfway through the song Wesley came to the second stage (that was right in the middle of the GA pit) and joined Jeremiah for the next three including “Cleopatra,” and the song that started it all, “Ho Hey”.
The band then moved back to the main stage for a couple more songs including “Angela,” “A.M Radio” (my personal favorite), “Dead Sea,” and “Flowers in Your Hair,” before coming back to the second stage for “My Cell.”
Things took an interesting turn as during the middle of “Never Really Mine,” Wesley came down into the crowd and took fans by the hand while he made his way back to the main stage. The crowd lunged forward as he made his way down, never missing a beat in the song as hundreds of adoring fans let him through the crowd- definitely making some dreams come true that night.
The rest of the band returned to the stage and played hit after hit, as eccentric pianist Steth then took to jumping off his piano and climbed on the rigging of the stage to get a better look at the sea of fans, and then running out into the fans, barefooted, during Big Parade.
The crowd cheered for an encore once the band wrapped up, and boy did they deliver, giving the audience an extra five songs. Some of the more seasoned Lumineers fans may remember confetti cannons going off during “Big Parade,” but hey, new tour- new surprises. While the confetti was missed earlier, The Lumineers brought it back during “BIRTHDAY,” showering the stadium with pink confetti, as the band made their way back to the second stage for the last time of the night to officially end with “Stubborn Love.”
As the final notes rang out, the band took a bow as Stelth was given a bouquet of flowers from a fan in the front row, and handed them off to Lauren. Lauren and Stelth then decided to cartwheel down the stage in a celebration and the love I felt that night from not only the band, but the audience, was unmatched. We were all strangers in the beginning, but by the end, we all felt a little closer to one another- bonded by truly one of the most amazing shows I’ve seen since the COVID-19 pandemic took live music away.
If there’s one concert you need to see this year, make it The Lumineer’s BRIGHTSIDE 2022 Tour.