Music

Twenty-One Pilots show leaves Greensboro in awe

PHOTOS BY TODD TURNER

by Katie Ward

The show’s first opening act was Judah the Lion who got the crowd excited with their high-energy performance. While I knew very little about this group, this group of four goofy guys from Tennessee certainly made an impression.

The second performer was Jon Bellion. This songwriter and rapper brought the lights and sounds of a New York club to North Carolina by closing his set with the song “New York Soul pt. II”.

The Twenty-One Pilots set opened with a projection on a black curtain and the intro to “Fairly Local” starts up as art is flashed up on the curtain and after the curtain drops “Heavydirtysoul” starts and everyone in screams as Josh Dun and Tyler Joseph appear on stage in black ski masks. Two songs later, we get a better idea of just how good the showmanship is with this duo when Joseph, while sitting at the piano, is covered with a black cloth and then suddenly appears at one of the entrances on the second level of the coliseum.

As Joseph makes his way back to the stage, a video plays of Dun swapping his black mask for a white one before coming back out to join Joseph on stage. A beautiful piano intro to their hit song “Heathens” from the Suicide Squad soundtrack that quickly turned electric and the room lit up in to a vibrant light show.

Even during the slower songs, there was so much imagery for each song, with beautiful drawings or pictures on the two large screen to either side of the stage. Joseph later appeared in a flowery shirt and white sunglasses with ukulele in hand to sing the songs “We Don’t Believe What’s On TV” and a cover of “Can’t Help Falling in Love”.

The duo moved to a smaller stage towards the middle of the floor and the pit crowd followed them like a wave. They played three songs, including what my daughter would inform me was a cover of a My Chemical Romance song called “Cancer”.

One of the best parts of the show was Josh Dun’s drum battle with a video of himself. Dun on the video had the red hair he used to sport. The battle, even against himself, showed everyone just how amazing Dun is as a musician and a performer. At the end of the recorded part, even video Dun was so impressed his head exploded.

One of the things that both the opening acts mentioned was how nice the guys from Twenty One Pilots are to the opening acts. This was further proved to me by bringing the band Judah and the Lion and Jon Bellion back on stage to cover four songs including Jump Around that featured everyone from all the bands and someone in what appeared to be a crawfish costume. This is probably the point that if they hadn’t won you over already, they had you now.

However, there was still a lot of show left. Joseph came off the stage and rolled across the crowd on the floor in something that looked like a giant red hamster ball during the song “Stressed Out”. Dun did a backflip off of Joseph’s piano during the song “Tear in My Heart”.

The final song of the night was “Trees” and they went all out with this one. Stunning visuals went along with the heart wrenching lyrics. Dun and Joseph both climbed on boards being held up by the audience along with a drum each. When they began to play the drums, red confetti that almost looked like birds shot out of the sky.

The guys thanked the audience, took a bow and left the stage. It was at that point I looked around and saw so many kids with their parents, all of who seemed to have had a great time. These two guys from Ohio put on a show fit for a three ring circus and I loved it all.

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