Live Music Review: First Responder + 20xx

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First Responder.

Some of you may remember First Responder from my post about their EP, In My Dreams, My Windows Faced West. In said post, I may or may not have spent almost a full paragraph talking about how much I love their lead singer, Sierra Mollenkopf, and her voice. Last night, after finally seeing the band (and a super cool electronic artist, 20xx) in person at Double Happiness, I learned that onstage, they’re even more captivating than through headphones.

Despite only having been together for around six months, First Responder looked like they were meant to be on that stage. They moved comfortably together, and between songs, they joked about being a Metallica cover band, playing opening riffs and interacting with the crowd.

Until I talked to Mollenkopf afterward, it was impossible to know that this was their first time playing at that venue. They were having that much fun rocking out together. It was contagious!

Now, I’m not going to lie – I was upstairs talking to the members of First Responder for the majority of 20xx’s set, but even then, I could feel the energy from the crowd. Plus, even without seeing the stage, Mollenkopf’s younger sister, Rowan, captured the music’s ’80s vibe perfectly with her enthusiastically retro dance moves. 20xx’s music was definitely captivating – I kept getting distracted from upstairs and I listened to his Soundcloud the whole way home.

The lighting may have sucked at Double Happiness, as per usual, so my photos didn’t turn out great, but I rarely go to a show there that I don’t enjoy, and this one was no exception, even though I missed two sets.

It was worth it just to go for First Responder – after listening to them for a few months, I finally got to meet Sierra and Cam, and they might be two of the most enthusiastic people I know when it comes to talking music.

I missed Nicole Dollanganger’s set, unfortunately, but I’d love to catch her the next time she comes through town because I’ve heard that she’s killer live. In the meantime, Columbus folks, check out First Responder, local OSU noise pop band!

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