Head North by Northwest.

2011.07.08: Allen Stone @ The Crocodile, Seattle, WA

Allen Stone and Macklemore are birds of a feather.  They’re both from Seattle.  Seahawks, maybe?  Happy Saturday, y’all.

Last year, I spent two days in Portland, and it quickly skipped all the way to the top of my “Cities I would live in besides San Francisco” list.  The music scene was rocking – we saw Passion Pit at the Crystal Ballroom one night, followed by Purity Ring the next afternoon, at the Doug Fir, approximately 100 feet away from the front door of our hotel room.  The food was great, the city fun, and the people absurdly nice.

In fact, at one point, we asked a random lady for directions, and we mentioned how every Portlander seemed particularly nice. She immediately responded, “I think it’s because of all the volcanoes in the area.  They create lithium deposits that leak into the water, and lithium’s been shown to increase happiness.”

That’s right.  Theories exist about why folks from Portland are so nice.

Anyway, Portland’s not Seattle, but I am geographically and culturally ignorant, so I’m just going to equate all major cities in the Northwest. I imagine Seattle to be just as hipster, just as chill, just as music-friendly, as Portland.  Please let me continue to believe that.  Allen Stone and Macklemore would, I think, agree.

So besides being from Seattle, what characteristics does Allen Stone share with Macklemore?  Why am I associating the two at all?  Let me explain.  Macklemore, who I’ve had the pleasure of seeing twice, is well-known for his insanely fun, engaging, straight-up-amazing live performances.  There are very few artists I’ve seen whose live performances rival Macklemore’s.

Allen Stone is one of those very few artists.  Last year, I saw Allen Stone at the Great American Music Hall, and it was one of the funnest shows I’ve ever attended.  Just like Macklemore, Allen Stone’s energy was entirely off the charts.  Okay, take the charts, and put them in front of you. Now take ten steps to the right, and look up.  That’s about where the energy level was.  Allen Stone’s got SOUL, and he ROCKED the Great American Music Hall! I have never seen a crowd dance like it danced for him, and he had no problem jumping onto the floor and joining us.  It must have really sucked to be one of Great American Music Hall’s neighbors that night, because we earthquaked the entire block.

Soulful. Bursting at the seams. Vibrantly electric. Vocally explosive. A white-hot eminence of a man.  Check out Allen Stone’s “Unaware,” off his self-titled album, “Allen Stone.”  Groove, groove, groove it out.

Oh, maybe you want to see Macklemore perform live with Allen Stone?  I’ve got you.  Watch them perform “Neon Cathedral,” my favorite track off of Macklemore’s “The Heist.”  This is awesome.

Finally, watch Allen Stone sing “Unaware,” live.

So, who’s down to go to Seattle?

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