Reviewed and Photographed by Josilyn Wakkuri Lybbert
Dan Reynolds’ LoveLoud Festival returned to Salt Lake City this weekend, on May 14th, for the first time since 2019. This year, the festival took place at Vivint Arena. The festival had a great lineup with the event’s founder Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons, Neon Trees, Anitta, WILLOW, and David Archuletta – just to name a few! LoveLoud is a festival that focuses on celebrating, accepting, and encouraging the LGBTQ+ community in Utah, especially the youth, was hosted by Kalen Allen.
I arrived a bit after 5:30. So, unfortunately, I missed a few performers leading up to Tegan and Sara. Seeing as I’m a member of the LGBTQ community and was raised in a conservative culture I was unprepared for how triggering this festival was for me.
The sound quality at USANA Amphitheater was decent for the performances but absolutely horrific for the host, Kalen Allen. He handled the major glitches with sparkling grace (literally, he was wearing this silver sequin jumpsuit).
I have been lucky enough to have seen Tegan and Sara live before. I love them and in my eyes, they can do no wrong. I’m bummed that I was behind schedule and missed the first part of their set. They finished their bit with “Closer” (a fantastic indie pop ballad full of soon to be realized sexual tension) and it was maybe a little thrilling hearing so many voices sing the words. Tegan and Sara are HUGE in the queer community and very popular as a mainstream band. Maneuvering through the crowd, singing along with nearly every person I walked by. Music creates a bond and it was something I had been looking forward to meeting with this concert.