Every year, there is at least one moment of the festival that stands out in my mind as one that defines the entire experience. Previous defining moments included meeting MxPx (my teen idols) for the first time, hearing Josh McDowell speak on Main Stage, seeing Stavesacre reunite, watching All The Day Holiday perform, and this year’s defining moment: a performance by Paper Route.
I walked into the Gallery tent this afternoon not knowing what to expect. All I knew was that Paper Route had a cool sounding name and it was the Gallery so it wouldn’t be hardcore. After finding a seat, I settled in expecting some mellow sit down music. I noticed everyone standing, strange for The Gallery. I stayed seated for the first song but quickly realized this was a band that deserved a closer look. After pushing my way through the crowd, I found a place to stand just a few feet away from the stage. What greeted my eyes and ears was one of the most creative bands I have ever seen perform at Cornerstone. Cornerstone vets will understand when I say they are on the creative level of Anathallo.
Describing their sound wouldn’t be a good thing for me to do here; everything I think of comes up short. They had the usual guitars as well as electronics, tambourines, various drums, and a xylophone. This was basically straight ahead rock with a more creative edge to both the lyrics and music. Once I realized my jaw was on the ground (and subsequently prying it back up), I began watching the crowd and their reactions. This is obviously a band that has made an emotional connection with their fans. Moments like this keep me coming back year after year.