Poppy – The Amsterdam – Saint Paul, MN – January 30th, 2020
Review by Sophiea Owen
Internet sensation turned pop-star turned metal musician Poppy came to the Amsterdam in Saint Paul for a sold out show on her “I Disagree” tour on January 30th, 2020. The tour shares the name of her new album “I Disagree” which came out on January 10th, 2020.
If you knew Poppy from her earlier internet days, this show would definitely be a change of pace. She has gone from a bleach-blonde bubblegum pop-star to a dark-haired, black-clad metal maiden, with the heavy breakdowns and screaming to match.
The Amsterdam quickly filled to the brim with people of all styles, and the energy in the room was intense. It’s a fairly small venue in downtown Saint Paul, one I’ve seen a lot of local bands and friends play at, so I was curious to see how a show like this would be here.
The opening band VOWWS was a little more like an endurance test than a set, with throbbing bass that made it a little hard to hear much else. There were floaty synths and dark vocals, but the deep techno bass was a little overwhelming.
The Amsterdam doesn’t usually have a barrier between the crowd and the stage. For this show, however, they had attempted to make one with some rails set up a foot or so from the stage. I say attempted because the barrier didn’t work at all. The second I touched it I knew it wouldn’t hold, and lo and behold, when Poppy hit the stage and started off the set with “Concrete,” a heavy metal jam that started an immediate mosh pit, the flimsy rails were immediately pushed forward and almost fell over, the entire front row being pushed onto the stage. It would have been more effective to just not have a giant metal liability that people were getting shoved into. A big part of the front row’s physical ability was expended trying to keep the barriers up ourselves.
The violence of the crowd matched the intensity of the music, as Poppy delved into nearly all of the songs off of her new album, and only a couple of songs from her last album. It was an embrace of her new style of music and personality. She has a poised grace and fairy-like quality that nicely contradicts the heaviness of the music. Her style is definitely more post-genre, heavy metals riffs complementing optimistic vocal lines. The entire new album is about freedom and finding one’s truest self, and despite the intense energy all throughout the night, it was an altogether positive experience for everyone involved. Poppy is definitely on the forefront of ingenuity for metal, pop, and pretty much every genre. She is moving beyond it and expanding its reach to a whole new audience and bringing many different demographics together, which is very refreshing to see.
Fill The Crown
Am I A Girl
Anything Like Me
Nothing I Need
All The Things She Said (t.A.T.u. Cover)
Sick Of The Sun
Don’t Go Outside
Bite Your Teeth