Christian/Alternative Rock heavyweights Switchfoot and Relient K are currently wrapping up the second leg of the “Looking For America Tour”—a massive co-headliner that has seen them rocking venues across North America and raising money for CURE International, a nonprofit that operates charitable hospitals in under-served countries around the world. We caught up with the tour as it hit the State Theatre on a rare break in the recent onslaught of snow storms, on Saturday, February 11th for a nostalgic night of music—at least for me (Switchfoot and Relient K were huge on the local alt rock radio station when I was in primary school).

The venue filled up quickly, with the audience numbering several hundred by the time Relent K came forth onto the stage for a 75-minute set. The band kicked things off with “High of 75” before continuing into “Bummin’,” and “Who I Am Hates Who I’ve Been.” Sing-alongs were frequent throughout their set and the set to come from Switchfoot—and while the crowd was mainly comprised of teenaged fans, I spied a couple parents up near the barrier enthusiastically singing along. Relient K closed their set out with fan-favorite “Be My Escape” and the track “Deathbed.”

After a bit of a break between bands where the audience was shown a video about CURE International, the screen lit up to show a drone video of Portland’s downtown, the lights dimmed, and Switchfoot emerged to the opening notes of “Holy Water” from their most recent release, 2016’s Where The Light Shines Through. This was followed by hit song and fan-favorite “Meant to Live” and “Oh! Gravity.”

Their set would go on to feature acoustic songs, a cover of Beastie Boys’ “Sabotage,” and more material from their recent record, including “I Won’t Let You Go,” “If The House Burns Down Tonight,” and “Float.” By the end of the night, they’d put on a heck of a tight, high-energy set that had fans of all ages satisfied as they closed things out with another of their hits “Dare You To Move.” If you’re like me and you grew up hearing them on the radio, this tour was a must-have trip down memory lane.


When he's not out in the woods, clomping around in streams, or looking at shiny rocks, you can find our U.S. Managing Editor and contributing photographer Nathan Katsiaficas in the photo pit, covering everything from heavy metal to punk, alternative, indie, and hip-hop.