Twenty One Pilots' actual encore [photo: Flickr]It's a time-honored concert cliché. A lead singer claims that his/her band's show is coming to what seems like a premature end. The band then leaves the stage. Of course, everyone in the audience knows that the band is coming back...but the fans dutifully clap and cheer, on cue, until the musicians' egos are sufficiently inflated and an acceptable, probably predetermined number of minutes have passed. Finally, said musicians return to the stage and play the song they were planning to do all along.
But on Sunday night, when Ohio alt-rock twosome Twenty One Pilots played a Yahoo! On the Road gig at Seattle's historic Moore Theatre, eccentric frontman Tyler Joseph — a man always in touch with his fans — kept it real and pulled back the curtain on this silly charade.
As the duo's frenetic set on a bill with Willy Moon, Capital Cities, and Gossip came to a close, Tyler straight-up informed the crowd: "So we have two songs left. But I'm gonna lie to you and say we only have one, because we'd like you to do an encore [with] us. It's always funny to me; if you've ever seen a live show, I think bands are funny, because they're always like, 'We have one song left, see ya!' And it's like, 'Bro, you didn’t play the one good song!'
"After this song, we'll even do the 'one more song' chant with you," Tyler offered helpfully, as amused fans whooped and laughingly agreed to play along with the ruse.
Sure enough, after playing "Car Radio," their supposed "last song," Tyler and his bandmate Josh Dun cranked out their actual finale, "Guns For Hands," just as promised...but only after Tyler and Josh pumped their fists and shouted, "ONE MORE SONG! ONE MORE SONG!" along with the fans themselves.
The comedic conclusion was the perfect way to wrap up a set filled with good vibes and crowd participation. Tyler had kicked off Twenty One Pilots' Yahoo! On the Road concert by announcing, "These songs mean a lot to us, so we're gonna play them really, really hard," then later told the adoring audience, "You guys are in the band with us."
Before the duo's fake "encore," Tyler also told the fans: "We're just a couple guys who play music that means a lot to us, and sometimes the songs are a little weird. Thanks for liking our weird songs…we truly believe there's nowhere else on earth we'd rather be than here playing music for you."
Ironically, when Twenty One Pilots did eventually leave the stage for good (after a rousing double drum solo), no one in the audience seemed to believe that another encore wasn't coming, and spectators continued their "ONE MORE SONG" group chant even after the house lights flickered on.
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