Live: PHOEBE BRIDGERS & MUNA // Surly Brewing Festival Field, Minneapolis, MN
Phoebe Bridgers and MUNA put on a magical set last weekend in Minneapolis.
After having shifted her tour to outdoor venues with proof of vaccine requirements, Saturday’s show was the safest I’ve felt at a gig since the return of the touring industry.
MUNA took the stage just as a few drops of rain began to fall. All smiles, bandmates Katie, Josette, and Naomi seemed surprised to receive such a warm welcome from the crowd. Their specific brand of electronic-inspired indie pop was amazing to hear live once again. They last played in Minneapolis in October 2019, celebrating their fabulous sophomore effort Saves The World, which landed them on GIG GOER’s Albums Of The Year 2019. After taking early 2020 to regroup, MUNA signed to Phoebe Bridgers’ Saddest Factory Records and are (hopefully) set to release more new music soon.
MUNA’s live set was wonderful. Highlights included slow-building, heavy-hitting Everything off of their 2017 debut About U and a playful rendition of their newest single and collaboration with Phoebe Bridgers, Silk Chiffon. Naomi was cheered on as they took over for Bridgers on her verse, the only let down being that Bridgers didn’t join them onstage herself. Finally, the group closed with crowd favorite I Know A Place. The sense of community and camaraderie among the crowd was amazing. MUNA is known for creating the safe space they sing about in I Know A Place, and this night was no different.
Phoebe Bridgers and her skeleton onesie-clad band appeared as night was falling. Roaring cheers accompanied Bridgers’ appearance, the singer smiling to the crowd as she took a moment to tune her guitar. The sweet and all-too-short set started with Motion Sickness off of 2017 debut album Stranger In The Alps. Much of the set felt like a blur, trying to take in every moment but also completely surrendering to each song.
At one point joking about the Jonas Brothers concert taking place across town and how the energy at her show was comparable, Bridgers said, “it’s like a Jonas Brothers concert for indie rock.” She then reminisced about seeing them open for Miley Cyrus/Hannah Montana in 2008. Another tender moment occurred when the crowd chanted “Georgia” over and over, prompting Bridgers to perform the fan-favorite. “I probably haven’t played this in years,” she said. “If I forget the words, cover me. Don’t tell anyone.”
Overall, the set was a stunning tribute to Bridgers’ gorgeous, Grammy-nominated album Punisher. Songs like ICU and I Know The End were amazing to hear in a live setting, with Bridgers screaming her heart out in the last few moments of I Know The End. Ending with an interesting encore choice, Bridgers concluded with a cover of Bo Burnham’s That Funny Feeling. The song was almost over by the time I realized what song she was singing. As the crowds dispersed, I wished I could go back in time and live through the night one more time.
Photos: Morgan Winston