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Westwood Horizon

The student news site of Westwood High School.

Westwood Horizon

The student news site of Westwood High School.

Westwood Horizon

The Show Must Go On: First Aid Kit Plays Through the Rain

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  • One by one, band members are introduced as they join the lead singers in the middle of the stage to play a cover of Willie Nelson’s “On The Road Again.”

  • Leaning into the microphone, lead singer Johanna Söderberg sings the chorus of “Out of My Head,” the first song on the new album.

  • About halfway through the concert, the band left the stage, leaving the sisters to play an acoustic version of “Ghost Town,” one of the first songs they ever made together.

  • Lead singer Klara Söderberg strums her guitar as she sings one of the songs off First Aid Kit’s latest album, “Palomino.”

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Upon entering Stubb’s Waller Creek Amphitheatre, I was greeted by the friendly environment unique to Austin venues as I moved close to the stage, eagerly awaiting First Aid Kit’s second-to-last stop on their Palomino Tour. 

The Swedish band is comprised of two sisters, Johanna and Klara Söderberg, whose music is influenced by classic country and folk music — as can be seen throughout their eight albums. First Aid Kit’s first show in the US was at Stubb’s, making this concert the perfect full-circle moment as they performed here for the third time. 

The band opened with the title track of their most recent album, Palomino. When the iconic opening notes on drums rang out, the whole venue cheered and clapped along in time with the song. The catchy song was the perfect way to start the concert, its joyful sound setting the mood for the rest of the night. 

Palomino was immediately followed by my personal favorite, Angel, a song from their new album about not putting so much pressure on yourself, but instead giving yourself forgiveness. When I first heard the song, Angel, it was as I was driving home after a rough day, and I immediately listened to the song at least two more times before I got home; it felt like First Aid Kit read my mind and knew exactly how to make me feel better. So when I heard the song live, it nearly brought tears to my eyes. 

While the tour was a tribute to their latest album, the band also played some of their older songs. When I first heard the opening vocals to the title track of their 2014 album Stay Gold, I instantly knew what song they were playing and began singing along. It was the first song I heard by them that made me want to listen to more by First Aid Kit. 

First Aid Kit also takes a lot of inspiration from country music, so when they played one of their older songs, Emmylou, a song inspired by the love stories of great country legacies such as Emmylou Harris and Gram Parsons, the crowd was ecstatic. It was a song I had always imagined hearing live, and they definitely did not disappoint. Not only that, but it was only fitting that the band played a cover of Willie Nelson’s On the Road Again in his home state. 

The band had an amazing stage presence, immediately bringing energy to the whole venue, despite the pouring rain halfway through the concert. With their witty back-and-forth jokes and crowd participation during fan favorites such as Lion’s Roar, the concert had an exciting and amiable feel to it. 

The concert had such a friendly atmosphere, in part due to the smaller outdoor venue. When it started raining, I wasn’t bothered, and no one else seemed to be either, because we were so excited to hear every song. In fact, it was worth standing in the downpour to hear some of my favorite songs like Stay Gold and Fireworks played live. 

After years of being a fan of First Aid Kit’s music, it was a truly unforgettable experience to see them live for the first time and hear the songs that bring me so much joy and nostalgia in person.

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About the Contributor
Hannah McDonough
Hannah McDonough, Horizon Assistant Editor
Class of 2024 I am so excited to continue working on the Horizon this year! Aside from writing and reporting, some of my favorite things to do include reading, listening to music, and watching Gilmore Girls.

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