Kings of Leon got their second chance at Firefly Music Festival on Friday night when they took the main stage in Dover, Delaware. Last year, the Followills were barred from going on when an announcement over the PA system forced people to leave the festival due to "inclement weather."
But despite a few, looming rainclouds the night before, everything was fine and dandy on Friday night. The crowd was thousands deep, but spread out. Some were lying in hammocks they’d tied up between trees. The sun had been bearing down all day, so everyone was a different shade of burnt.
The Tennessee rock band opened with 2009’s “Crawl,” an appropriate choice given the terrible events and general state of uneasiness around the country after the massacre in Orlando last weekend. Many other artists at Firefly had shown their support for the LGBT community, which was targeted in the attack (Alunageorge started their set waving a massive rainbow flag). Leon’s lyrics ran hauntingly true in the context of the attacks and the ongoing debate over gun control.
“You better learn to crawl / You better learn to crawl / Before I walk away / Before I walk away”
"The reds and the whites and abused / The crucified USA / As their hypocrisy unfolds / Oh hell is truly on its way"
The cynicism of the song, which busts down any happy facade remaining over the government and uncovers the terrified sentiment flooding the nation, isn’t fit for a party like Firefly, but perhaps it serves more of a unifier -- something to further prod us and remind us that things are fucked up right now (as if we needed the reminder).
The rest of KoL’s set ran as a typical KoL set. They played “Use Somebody.” They ended their encore with “Sex on Fire.” These guys are pros… rock veterans, you could say. They supposedly have a new album on the way.
And even though Kings of Leon were the headliners, Firefly’s festivities didn’t end there. Disclosure would go on after midnight, as well as The Moth & The Flame and White Panda.