Lost Evenings Festival
House of Blues, Boston, MA
05.16.19 – 05.19.19
Frank Turner’s sold out Lost Evenings Festival wasn’t just four nights of folk music and punk rock, it also offered a daily open-mic (which Turner played at) at Bill’s Tavern hosted by Derek Zanetti (also known as the Homeless Gospel Choir), panels with topics such as mental health in the music industry and “how to be a good bystander” (fan at a punk rock show), and a pop-up tattoo parlor.
The lineup was curated by Turner himself, and was basically a bunch of his friends, other bands on his record label (Xtra Mile), and local acts from Boston split across two stages that did not overlap in set times so you were able to see each band if you did not want to stay in the main stage crowd. For Turner, each night’s set had a theme: Solo Acoustic Night; Poetry Of The Deed 10th Anniversary of being released; Be More Kind World Tour set (similar set list to his latest tour); and Xtra Mile Night, which featured bands from the label on each stage.
The variety of musicians was impressive, with a spectrum ranging from the “in your face” punk stylings of Against Me! to the tender folk songs of John K. Samson. Trapper Schoepp brought midwest rock, The War on Women, Haley Thompson King absolutely shredded on her vintage Gibson, and Skinny Lister was a force of English punk rock. Lastly, the Nick Alexander Stage introduced the festival to the throwback pop-punk of The Penske File, wacky dance tunes of Koo Koo Kanga Roo, and the powerful stories of Kayleigh Goldsworthy.
Frank Turner and the Sleeping Souls always pour their heart out on stage; which is why fans from around the world descended upon Boston. He and his band put on a master class of engagement with the crowd, through their performance, but more so the songs that he has put out into the world that most people can relate to at one or more points in their life.
Love songs like “There She Is” and “The Way I Tend To Be,” punk rock tunes “Four Simple Words” and “Try This at Home,” inspirational anthems “Get Better” and “Recovery,” and political rockers like “Love, Ire, and Song.”
The stage energy was electric between a band who has performed over 2,300 shows in nearly 20 years. His sets drove the crowd to continuous dancing and sing-alongs (with the exception of acoustic night which was swaying and sing-alongs). Turner was the epitome of organized chaos, dancing around the stage with his guitar, jumping off of platforms, and occasionally stage diving. He is the catalyst behind a fan base who describes themselves as “not a cult.”
A four-day festival is a long, arduous, and fun time for a fan. It is also tiring, to say the least. Now, think of how tiring it would be as a musician to organize and play a set every night for four nights. That is what Frank Turner has done for his fans in the creation of Lost Evenings.
Review and photos by Phillip Johnson
Lost Evenings Festival 2019