Review and Photos – Vancouver Welcomes Back “Unapologetically Punk” K.Flay at the Hollywood Theatre, Mar 10 2022
– review by Stephanie Lecce, photos by Kirk Chantraine
Blood pumping, stage lights flashing… Who could have asked for a better kickstart to the weekend and post-pandemic era than this sold out show at the Hollywood Theatre? It’s no question that Vancouver attendees were ready for a night of body swaying, head banging, and let’s be honest, choices deemed “Bonnie Henry disapproved.” The jam-packed ground floor was filled with excited energy as we marked the resurgence of live music as we used to know it (Buh bye masks, 6-foot distances, and dance bans) and celebrated with this riveting performance by K.Flay.
“Four Letter Words” was the perfect song to kick off the show with a bang, and introduce fans to her newest album Inside Voices Outside Voices. As you can expect, K.Flay made a fiery entrance as she leapt onto the stage, hopping from one elevated stage level to the next. Her presence was captivating as you watched her air drumming mid-song, playing off of the energy of her bandmates, and belting out lyrics while members of the audience sang along “You didn’t deserve me.” Crowd is cheering, arms are waving, and hundreds of “middle fingers in the air”…like they just don’t care.
That wasn’t the only moment of the show where K.Flay strongly encouraged the crowd to join her in stretching their arms high in the sky, clenching their fists, and raising their middle fingers. Her song “TGIF”, which Stereogum has deemed “a nu-metal anthem,” was another provocative example, and an undeniable crowd pleaser that shook the room.
“I’m feeling alive, I’ll do it my way till the day that I die…middle fingers up, till the reaper shows up.”
K.Flay’s performance of “TGIF” encompassed the soul of the album itself, an expression of the bottled up emotions trapped within us that society doesn’t allow for us to release. In a Rock Sound Interview, K.Flay explains “We are constantly negotiating the animal within and the cage that we live in.” As she ferociously grips her mic, thrusting her arms high in the air, she truly did unleash her inner beast.
What really made this tour stand out was the way that K.Flay created space amidst her strong set to open up by revealing parts of her life. She gave off an admirable confidence as she shared insight into her journey of self discovery, leading her to a place where she can comfortably embrace the person she is…a “weirdo” at heart, and wearing it proudly like a badge of honour. K.Flay really preached this message of unity and acceptance in between songs, which has earned her a following of fellow “weirdos” that come together as a community whenever she hits a stage.
Any avid K.Flay concert attendee will know that a sold-out show results in a “guest” appearance by Beef Daddy…a.k.a a cover band that involves members shuffling instruments and landing K.Flay on the drums for a quick jam session.
“This is the best show we’ve had here yet”- awe-struck bartender at Hollywood Theater claims, as he slides a drink across the bar. The crowd’s energy and roaring cheers can attest to that, as they screamed for an encore…and K.Flay confidently delivered.
Not feeling “High Enough” and craving another K.Flay hit? Well, catch her in San Diego on the 15th, or any of her final stops in the U.S before she leaves us on a jet plane to bring the energy to Europe for the last leg of her tour.
More K.Flay at the Hollywood Theatre photos: