LIVE PHOTOS + REVIEW: Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness, flor, Grizfolk // San Diego, CA

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After two months on the road, Grizfolk and flor helped Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness close out the Upside Down Flowers Tour at House of Blues San Diego in California.

First up were alternative rock band Grizfolk. After releasing their first full-length album Waking Up The Giants in January 2016, Grizfolk were back and ready to bring their music to audiences like the one that filled the House of Blues. The enthusiasm for their return was evident with plenty of people packing the venue early to catch their set. At the San Diego show, fans got to hear the newly released “Spoonful” and another taste from their next album with “Black Magic” and “Hurricane.” If their new songs are any indication, Grizfolk are gearing up for an exciting year.

Feel-good band flor carried on the night with the bouncy, light songs off of their debut album come out. you’re hiding. While they may have been a new artist to many in the room, it may have been hard to tell with the way that fans in the front row were eagerly singing along. flor embraced the pool party vibes of the tour by donning board shorts and Hawaiian shirts, drinking out of pineapple cups, and taking a celebratory end-of-tour shot of alcohol. Anyone watching could tell that they loved playing their music, and the band took time in the middle of their set to appreciate the moment and express gratitude for the support from everyone who attended or contributed to this part of their journey.

And then it was time for the main act, Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness. Every show of this tour embodied the “pool party” experience with the stage design bringing in elements from the Upside Down Flowers artwork. The set started off unconventionally with the band playfully coming out one-by-one with a rubber duck pool thermometer, pool skimmer, and watering can before they picked up their instruments and took their spot under flowers and pool umbrellas.

Partway through the first song, Andrew and his piano emerged and rolled out to center stage where he looked out to a venue packed wall-to-wall with beaming faces familiar and new. The energy was electric song after song, and Andrew gave a nod to all those who have stuck with his music over the years by also playing trusty favorites from the Something Corporate and Jack’s Mannequin eras. Whether it was “Punk Rock Princess,” “Dark Blue,” or “Ohio,” the fans were happily and loudly singing along to Andrew McMahon’s lyrics. In particular, the lyric “she wrote me a letter from San Diego” during the song “I Woke Up in a Car” drew some extra emotion from this San Diego crowd.

From Andrew singing throughout the crowd to bringing his daughter Cecilia up on the piano for a song, you could feel the love and laid-back southern California vibes radiating in that room. Andrew even crowd-surfed around the whole venue atop a pool inflatable, stopping to grab a shirt at the merch table and take a shot at the bar in the back along the way. The night culminated with the members of Grizfolk, flor, and some of the crew joining the band onstage for one last “swim” during the final song of the night. This show was a celebration – of the work the bands and crew put into the grueling months of touring, of the friends, family, and fans who have supported Andrew McMahon for over 20 years, and of the music that brought everyone together, even if only for one night.

Didn’t get to experience the land of Upside Down Flowers? Missed out on this tour?
You can catch both Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness and Grizfolk at KAABOO Del Mar this September.

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Connect with the bands —
Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness: Instagram // Twitter // Facebook // Website
flor: Instagram // Twitter // Facebook // Website
Grizfolk: Instagram // Twitter // Facebook // Website

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