I have been staring at my laptop for a long, long time is a nice way to start a post about my favorite day in my entire life. I honestly don’t know how to tell you how much this day means to me. Spoiler alert: a lot. But before I start to bawl my eyes out again, let me tell you about the show.

buke and gase

Buke and Gase opened the show. These guys are amazing live. I don’t know any of their songs but I ended up liking them.

buke and gase in manila

Next to Buke and Gase were Youth Lagoon. I first saw them live in Singapore and I wasn’t paying attention at all because my loins were excited to run to the other stage for The Jezabels.

youth lagoon

It’s fortunate that I got to see them again and this time I paid attention alright. There were no distractions apart from the voice at the back of my head telling me: The National is up next, go pee before you wet yourself.

trevon powers

Trevon Powers: amazing as always. He looks a lot like Neil Gaiman god what am I even saying!!!!!

During Youth Lagoon’s set, Matt fucking Berninger was watching god damn it I saw him there standing holding a wine glass. I wasn’t able to get a picture because that would up my creepster game like x10 but HE IS SO FUCKING BEAUTIFUL. He was given a monobloc chair and then I wasn’t able to see his beautiful face but he was tapping his foot and god damn it my ovaries almost exploded.


youth lagoon


When I turned to my my left Matt was there again(!) with his phone on his right hand pointed at me or us whatever okay the crowd from that dark corner and I was just in time to unleash the SUPER CREEP~ in me and so I smiled. He now has a photo of me along with a bunch of people who were most definitely paying attention to Youth Lagoon. Matt, you little blue-eyed shit, that made me so happy.

When Youth Lagoon’s set was over I literally ran to the toilets because I don’t want to miss The National and I was panicking a lot. I didn’t go to the concert venue four hours before the event just to miss The National.

the national in manila

After 10 or 15 minutes of waiting, this happened. My palms were sweaty and I felt like throwing up because I still couldn’t believe they were here and I was at the front row for this magical thing.

matt berninger

matt berninger

They opened with Don’t Swallow the Cap and I was a bit distracted that I couldn’t hear Matt’s sweet, sweet, sweet voice. I WANTED TO MURDER PEOPLE BECAUSE THAT BARITONE IS WHAT EVERYONE WANTED TO HEAR OKAY

the national

bryce dessner

matt b the national

But everything was alright because Matt and his beautiful face.




Like everyone else, I also wish to be Matt’s microphone in my second life.

aaron dessner



I honestly cannot tell you how happy I am that I got to see them live. It was so cathartic. That night was the moment of all moments – the repressed feelings of rage towards jerk exes and unrequited love and finding my person and hurt from family members I never got to say.


When they played Slow Show, I lost it.



I was desperately waiting for them to play Mr. November because Matt Berninger crowd surfs when they play that song but he wasn’t allowed to that night which I know disappointed a lot of people including myself. I have an embarrassing video recording when Matt went down the stage and Matt walked in front of me and this fucking bouncer slapped me in the arm because I was reaching for Matt. I wasn’t going to grab his crotch or anything, damn it.


But during Terrible Love, he went down the stage again and went at the barricade in front me(!) I WAS FREAKING OUT BECAUSE MATT BERNINGER WAS IN FRONT OF ME AND I DIDN’T KNOW WHAT TO DO BUT I KEPT SINGING ALONG TO TERRIBLE LOVE BECAUSE THAT WAS THE ONLY RATIONAL THING TO DO. RIGHT? He giggled for a second and it was a cute giggle and I wanted to stay in that moment forever. I also got to hug him. It was the best 10 (or 15, I don’t remember HUHU) seconds of my life.


Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks was their last song and my face was a mess because I was crying and I was feeling all these feelings and everyone was singing along and it was like a warm hug just being there and I could tell everyone was feeling the same as I did. I am so happy I was there to witness this amazing performance and now I am a sad sack because it’s over and I want to see them again. It’s extremely hard to move on.

I also got to snag a copy of their setlist. This was Bryce’s. I believe Matt’s was ruined because he poured wine on the stage before they played Vanderlyle. You know, for good luck.

the national in manila setlist

Overall it was an experience I never want to forget. I didn’t get to touch Matt’s beard but I got to hug him and that’s enough a souvenir for me to keep. I will always remember when The National played in Manila and I was there. I WAS THERE.


9 thoughts on “Bloodbuzz Manila

    • HAHAHA this post is equal parts exclamation points and me freaking out but yeah, I was really excited and happy and overall it was a night I will never forget. Thank you for reading, Nikki!

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