Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Thoughts on the Las Vegas Paramore concert

This past Friday was my first ever Paramore concert, and more importantly, it was the band's first concert in Vegas since the new incarnation of the band released a self-titled album.

No, this is not from the show I attedded. It's only
a placeholder until I have the chance to upload my own.
I will open by saying that while the Joint at the Hard Rock Casino is an excellent venue for concerts (I've seen Flogging Molly and Disturbed there and both concerts KICKED ASS), the route to get in is unbelievably frustrating. Going straight from work, it took a circuitous route just to get into the parking garage, where I parked on the freaking roof.

And the line to get into the Joint, if you followed my live tweeting in line, was unbelievably and unnecessarily complicated. As you can imagine, traffic after this concert was a pain, but I suppose you only pay for the music when buying tickets, so let's talk about that.

The sole opening act was an band called Kitten. My best description of this band is that they are what would happen if Pat Benatar and a bunch of 80s hair band guys tried to perform emo punk music. It may have been the audio setup, but the guitars REALLY drowned out the singer a lot, which was odd since she was clearly belting the lyrics out.

They weren't the best opening act I've ever heard, but they were definitely good at what they do. It's rare that I find an opening act where I want to seek out their albums, but I'll have to make a point to keep an eye out for them in the future.

I'll leave a video of them here so you can judge them. Honestly, their music sounds smoother in the videos, so I'm thinking that something in the audio setup was off. Either way, it sounded ok there and it sounds good in the video.

Anyway, Paramore came out roughly a half hour later, performing "Moving On," which is quickly becoming one of my favorite songs despite it being a 90-second interlude. I have videos on my iPod that I'll add later on, but I need to wait until I'm on another computer.

They immediately broke into "Misery Business," and then midway through the song, Hayley Williams announced that she had some type of stomach issue (she said food poisoning, but given that Paramore canceled a show three days later, I'm guessing some type of flu bug).

Though she didn't go for any of her highest notes and show off her range, she still moved across the stage with a tremendous deal of energy and sang every song without the aid of backing vocals (if you don't include the audience, which was RABID).

I made the point on Facebook and Twitter that Hayley gave her "Flu Game" performance during that and (I'm assuming) the San Francisco show, and I mean that. Given how I felt with a normal flu just a couple of weeks ago, to perform at as high a level as she did for more than an hour (with two encore songs to boot) was nothing short of astonishing.

Taylor, Jeremy and (insert random other band members here) were all on point and each song was studio quality. One of the few missteps was that at no point during this show were the others on stage introduced, but maybe I'm just used to the full introductions Flogging Molly always makes a point of doing.

The only other complaint I have (and unless you live here, this will sound petty) was Hayley's use of the state during the concert - specifically, she pronounced it ne-VAH-duh instead of Ne-Va-dah. I'm guessing this is like when people pronounce the 's' in Illinois or pronounce Louisville like 'louie', but I can't verify that as I don't live in those areas.

Anyway, there were a lot of older songs used and I was actually surprised more new songs weren't put into the rotation. The only new songs used were "Fast in My Car," "Now," "Ain't It Fun," "Moving On," "Still Into You," "Anklebiters" (during which the band let about a dozen people on stage to sing along) and "Proof." Yes, I know that's seven songs, but I was firmly expecting 10 songs off the album. Either way, Paramore has a deep enough repetoire that the other songs weren't missed.

All the major songs were hit by the end, and the encore was capped the show perfectly by using "Proof" and "Brick By Boring Brick."

Paramore is definitely a band to check out if they're near your town, and I will be making a point to see them any time they're in town. While the fans don't mosh, the band creates a fun atmosphere on their own and kept me interested the whole way through.

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