Nov. 9 was an emotionally charged day for the United States, but it was all love inside of the EagleBank Arena where British alternative-rock band The 1975 was performing. The group is on tour to support their second full-length album, I like it when you sleep, for you are so beautiful yet so unaware of it, which debuted at No. 1 in both the UK and the US (it also, unsurprisingly, set the record for the longest No. 1 album title ever).

Given the political events of the day, one might expect the young liberal crowd to have a somber mood, but the prospect of seeing their favorite band was enough to lift the spirts of everyone in the arena. Not one to shy away from politics, frontman Matty Healy is known to give speeches during shows urging audience members to vote against Trump, and fans were waiting to see what he would say tonight.

Sure enough, before performing the song “Loving Someone” in front of a giant LCD screen lit up with the rainbow pride flag (the song has been adopted by fans as an informal LGBT anthem of sorts), Healy spoke for several minutes about the state of America:

We know America, and the America we know is a young America. It’s a young America,;it’s a liberal America; it’s a compassionate America; it’s a socially responsible America. It’s an America that doesn’t react to fear with anger and doesn’t react to anger with fear. It’s also a black America; it’s a Muslim America; and it’s a gay America … And the thing is, whereas I know what seemingly is half the country is at the moment sided with unfortunately bigotry and racism … the other half of the country – aka you guys – is probably the best country that we’ve ever met.”

Featured Photo Credit: Guitarist of The 1975, Adam Hann, performs at Eagle Bank Arena on Nov. 9. (Casey Tomchek/Freelance Photographer)

Casey Tomchek is a sophomore journalism and English double major and can be reached at ctomchek1@gmail.com. 

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