It’s NF’s motto. His slogan. His brand.
It’s raw, unapologetic, intense, honest and fierce.
Real music is essentially NF, and this NF is Nathan Feuerstein–an American rapper, artist and songwriter who has charted well on both the secular and Christian charts. He’s released three studio albums and his most recent, “Perception,” came out in October 2017. NF is currently on the road for his Perception Tour promoting his new music, and it’s one hell of a show.
I saw NF last Saturday, February 17 at the Myth Live in St. Paul, MN. From the first song of the set to the last, there was no moment of silence or boredom. The show was fast-paced and non-stop the entire way through. NF performed about 18 songs, and it only took him an hour.
If you’ve been to an NF show before, you know there’s absolutely zero uncertainty regarding what the show might be like. NF fans show up to his tours with this at the forefront of their mind: the show is going to be HYPE and NF is going to kill it.
Those two facts are mostly what the show is, and really, are all it needs. The energy, excitement and passion that NF brings to the stage exceeds any concert hopes or expectations. NF wasn’t playing when he said, “I leave it all on the stage, I leave it all on the stage.”
My heart is still pounding when I think back to the show.
In a small club in Minnesota with space for about 3,500 people — the Perception Tour was set for a sold-out crowd. Fans waited outside for hours in the general admission lines and the February winter weather that was freezing cold. By the time fans got inside, most were numb and didn’t mind being so close to one another squished in a moshpit.
The opening act that warmed up the crowd was Nightly (“Night, love you”). The band was surprisingly good. I never know what to expect from opening acts, but these guys were cool in every essence of the word. They were collected on stage, the vocals were smooth and their songs were a sweet mix of alternative and pop.
Instantly, I was hooked, and so was the rest of the audience. My group and I were dancing along, nodding our heads to the music and bouncing to the beats. The bass they brought to the stage was captivating and consuming. I’d love to see them again. They’re definitely going on my 2018 playlist.
During the set change for NF, the atmosphere changed from a 10 to 100. Pulses pounded, hearts raced and fans lost their minds. Everyone was in major anticipation of what was to finally come.
The lights went out as fans chanted “NF NF NF NF.” The bass and drum kicked in and tour visuals lit up the screens on stage. The fans fell silent, taking it all in. As the energy built, the screams of excitement began. The image on stage of a set of keys progressed. Finally, the stage came to life with smoke, lights and NF… in a cell.
NF started with “Outcast.” The lyrics he rapped established the visuals, design and overall aesthetics on stage.
Woke up in the cell, where am I at?
Yeah, it’s cold, but I like that
What, am I trapped?
Heart’s beating out of my chest
Door’s locked, but the keys are in my hands
Hm, yeah, that’s weird, it doesn’t make sense, does it?
NF brought so much intensity to the stage. The crowd was connected to it during the entire concert and so receptive to everything unfolding before them. As they rapped along to every song, in the crowd you could feel how they really understood the stories and emotion behind the music. That’s what I love most about the NF fans. They take the lyrics he writes and apply it to their own pain, struggles and experiences. At his concert, it was apparent how much the fans and artist truly relate to one another.
After “Outcast,” NF moved right into “Greenlight.” It’s one of my favorites songs. Plus, it’s one of his songs I actually know all of the words to and can rap along quickly. My cousins and siblings have all the words to all his songs down, I’m still catching up :) NF raps hard.
Some of my favorite songs from the show include “Destiny,” “All I Do,” “10 Feet Down,” “Lie,” “3 A.M.” and “Let You Down.” Everyone song is powerful live, but those were my highlights. The choruses on each of those songs are so good in concert.
TOUR VLOG HIGHLIGHTS:
I can’t wait to share the longer version of this video on my YouTube.
If you ever have the chance to see NF, do it. There is nothing like seeing an individual with such passion pursue what they love. NF’s Real Music is the embodiment of that.
The story behind Real Music? Taken right from his lyrics:
God gave me the gift and he gave me the ability to do this
And he also gave me this as an outlet
And that’s what music is for me
When I feel something, whether it’s anger
Um, it’s a passion about something, or frustration
Like this is where I go, this is, that’s the whole NFrealmusic thing man
This is real for me, I need this, this is a therapy for me
Have you seen NF before?
Let me know in the comments. As always, I’d love if you would follow my blog and hit me up on social media–let’s talk all things music, concerts and NF.