The boys are back in town

By Katie Agnew

Hanson played at First Avenue last Sunday evening. Certainly no strangers to Minneapolis after several stops on tours for their album “Middle of Nowhere,” which just celebrated its tenth anniversary, the Hanson brothers have shed their blonde hair and with it their feminine youthfulness. Named “The Walk Tour” after their latest album, the current tour is centered on the idea of raising awareness for poverty and the AIDS epidemic of Africa. Before each show, Hanson goes for a mile-long walk with fans, asking to walk barefoot in order to experience what it feels like to not be able to afford shoes. TOMS shoes are for sale at the concerts, and for each pair sold, one pair of shoes is donated to Africa. Starting the show at 9:30, Hanson played until after midnight, performing songs from their newest album, “The Walk,” as well as hit songs from the past. The first half of the show was a powerful performance with Isaac on guitar, Taylor on piano/keyboard and Zac on drums. After a short intermission, brothers returned to the stage for an acoustic performance, creating a more intimate environment. “Mmmbop” was by far the best song of the night, because it showed their transformation from teenage boys playing pop music in the nineties into remarkable musicians raising awareness of global issues with a more rock/blues feel. The guys really seemed to have a great time, which definitely impacted the feel of the show. They ended the show with an a cappella song dedicated to children in African orphanages. For me, this really proved their compassion and dedication to their cause. Hopefully when they return to the Twin Cities in 2008 for the second leg of their tour, they will bring back the same spirit. Overall, this was the best Hanson concert I have ever been to, and definitely not the last.