Written by Carmen Mueller
Photos by Ashleigh Graybill
Saturday, November 17 Waterparks came to Iowa City on their Entertainment Tour. And to say this tour is entertaining is a complete and utter understatement. This show has been jam packed with everything you could possibly want in a concert; intense and passionate fans, great music, and a fantastic lineup of performers.
A surprise addition to the Iowa show was De’Wayne Jackson, a Houston, Texas native who Austin discovered when he was at a Set It Off show. A ton of fans rallied when they heard Jackson was going to be performing, which is a huge testament to his likeability and charm. On stage, he had an incredible charisma and a way of connecting with everyone in the room. Jackson knows exactly how to perform his art; whether he rocked out and danced on stage to songs like “Top Man” or slowed it down, like on the track “Coming Back Home”. With his intimate tracks, unique sound, and great stage presence, I can see why he was added to the lineup.
Following Jackson, was Nick Gray, a Boston rapper who wowed the crowd with songs from his 2018 release Bittersweet. The man behind songs like “Advocate”, “Fairweather” and “Animal” put on an awesome set. During his performance of “Bittersweet” his fans held up lights and showed him much love.
An act that truly brought a ton of energy to the night was California band Super Whatevr. Singer Skyler McKee really hyped up the entire room with songs from their Never Nothing album and from their earlier releases such as “Bloomfield”, “Common Cold”, and their super personal track “Someone Somewhere Somehow”. The emo-centric band brought that feeling along for the ride when they performed “Someone Somewhere Somehow”, a track that pays tribute to lead singer Skyler McKee’s cousin who committed suicide. The message of taking care of each other, and being loving was a huge standout moment.
Ryan Seaman and former Panic! at the Disco touring bassist Dallon Weekes also graced the stage with a high energy performance. The duo performed songs from their 1981 Extended Play EP which included some of their best hits like “Bleed Magic”, “Absinthe” and “Do It All The Time”. Their more rocking sound and Dallon’s almost contorted dancing was the perfect way to lead up to the final act.
Waterparks performed to a jam packed venue and put on a great show, that is after they had to maneuver their way through the crowd to even get on stage. Of course everyone’s favorite bleach boy Awsten Knight made sure that there was as much excitement in the room as possible along with guitarist Geoff Wigington and drummer Otto Wood. They played a ton of songs from their album Entertainment like “Blonde”, “TANTRUM” and “We Need to Talk” along with favorite songs from past albums like “Take Her to the Moon” and “Stupid for You”. The Texas trio put on one hell of a show, with their insane stage presence and Awsten actually jumping off of the stage and into the crowd. But of course, they did slow it down during “21 Questions” and “Lucky People” which allowed for everyone to feel even more connected than before. This band not only has an avid fan base, but they have a way of relating to their audience in order to create a feeling of belonging and family.
This show had an overflow of excitement: from the surprise addition of De’Wayne Jackson all the way up to the men behind the tour, Waterparks. If there is one thing that can be certain, it’s that there is no shortage of talent. There are only a few tours left on the Waterparks Entertainment Tour, so if you can snag a ticket, I suggest you do!