The looming threat of thunderstorms could not and did not keep Indianapolis fans of Phillip Phillips and Matt Nathanson away on Sunday June 26th. Fans began arriving many hours before the gate opening was scheduled; and, even after a two and a half hour gate opening delay, fans remained undeterred and even cheered when gates opened after a quick spout of rain.
Because of the delay, Eric Hutchinson started his set as soon as gates were opened to the public. Unfortunately, concertgoers were still milling in after the four-song set had run its course. But for those who were admitted early enough, Hutchinson engaged the crowd as best he could – even joking that his goal was to gain one million twitter followers while he currently only had twenty-two thousand.
Not too soon after, Matt Nathanson took the stage and captivated the audience. While personally not knowing any of the music beforehand, Nathanson’s energy and joyful presence made me an instant fan. He reminds me of a man in his forties who lives on the beach and drinks Corona’s all day. When truly feeling the looseness of his songs, he throws his hands in the air and swings his hips from side to side like he’s having the time of his life. Nathanson played for nearly an hour, fans standing in a light rain the entire time, and everyone was left in high spirits for Phillips to come on stage.
It was mildly surprising how many concertgoers left after Nathanson set, but I am left to believe such was only the case because of the late hour. As the show had been delayed because of weather, Phillip Phillips took the stage at 10:45 p.m. Dressed in nothing other than some loose fitting blue jeans, a plain gray t-shirt, and his guitar, Phillips took the stage thanking fans for staying through the night to see him before even playing a song. As his band took the stage, Phillips opened the show with “Raging Fire”, the most popular single from his second studio album Behind the Light. Phillips seemed thrilled with the crowd’s response to his music, and continually thanked fans for staying and also apologized profusely for not being able to play a full set. After every song Phillips would warn, “we only have a couple songs left” which I don’t believe many people believed; however, six short songs later, Phillips was thanking everyone for the great night and the house lights were rising. Hits like “Home” and “Gone, Gone, Gone” from Phillips’ first studio album The World From The Other Side of the Moon were included in the set, and surprisingly Phillips managed to squeeze a brand new song from his not-yet-released album into the set list called “Magnetic”. While the night came to an end much sooner than most wanted, Phillip Phillips, Matt Nathanson, and Eric Hutchinson did the best with the time they were offered and showed Indianapolis what a great show was even while the rain continued to fall from the sky.
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