A Dance Party Ensued When Judah & The Lion Tore Up The 95X Big-X-Cuse Stage REVIEW+PHOTOS: Judah & The Lion @ 95X BIG-X-CUSE! 6/16/18
SYRCAUSE, NY- Bringing together some of the most popular names in alternative rock out there, Syracuse’s 95X debuted it’s first ever Big-X-Cuse Fest! With a line-up featuring both seasoned veterans and newcomers to the alternative rock scene, 95X’s lineup was very impressive considering it was the radio station’s first year hosting this event.
After the crowd was left reeling from AJR’s killer performance, they were then greeted with Judah & the Lion’s introduction an hour later. Having previously seen these guys play once before when they came through the area on their last headlining tour, I was well aware of just how much these Western New Yorkers love their fix of Judah & the Lion.
As what can only be described as “bootie poppin’ banjo music”, Judah blends a wide variety of genres such as indie pop, bluegrass, rock and a little hip hop. Another Nashville band to take center stage, Judah Akers, Brian Macdonald, and Nate Zuercher came flying out as they rapped along to “Booty Wurk” by T-Pain. This really exemplifies the goofy and relatable nature that Judah & the Lion radiates; coming out and dropping it low all with a smile on their faces just showed that they were all about having fun and not taking themselves too seriously.
After this perfect opening, frontman Judah Akers and the rest of the gang kicked up a tune to “Twenty-Somethings”. Much like AJR, the energy that the Nashville dudes were displaying was absolutely infectious and had the audience members jumping and screaming along with Akers and the guys. I’ve seen these guys two times before, this being the third, and every time they continue to exceed my expectations.
Although all the originals they played had each audience member hyped from the start, nothing could compare to when Judah & the Lion covered the Killers’ classic, “Mr. Brightside”. Not only did they cover probably one of the most well-known songs of the 21st century, they nailed it to a T. It was difficult not to sing along with Akers and the crowd while trying to capture all the great moments coming to life on stage. To close out their set, the dudes went all-out. Encouraging a wide-spread “dance party”, both Judah & the Lion and the crowd were dancing hard without a care in the world which perfectly describes what their type of shows are all about: Forgetting about life for a bit by dancing and having fun in the moment.