Tag Archives: thoughts

Five thoughts: Kelly Clarkson at the Joint (December 3).

1. Headlining Mix 94.1’s yearly holiday performance, Clarkson only got to play for an hour, even with simply two openers playing short sets, which meant that she excluded both big hits and new songs, plus the diverse covers she’s understood for including in her live shows. But she and her five-piece band (plus three back-up vocalists) maximized the short time, going through 14 tunes, including 4 from R&B-heavy brand-new album Meaning of Life.

2. Clarkson added a three-piece horn area for the Life songs, consisting of transmittable new single “Love So Soft” and set closer “Whole Lotta Lady,” a brash empowerment anthem that Clarkson declared was “my favorite tune to carry out, ever.” She also gushed about almost each song in the setlist, however it was clear she enjoyed to let loose on something new, and if pop radio figures out what to do with this song, it might end up among her signature numbers.

3. The soul impact reached older favorites, with the horn section augmenting “Stronger (What Does Not Kill You)” and “Since U Been Gone,” while both “Leave” and “Miss Independent” got full-on soul makeovers, which assisted breathe some brand-new life into tunes that Clarkson has been playing live for more than a decade now.

4. If she needed to include a Christmas tune, at least Clarkson selected her current single “Christmas Eve,” an energetic original that was released in conjunction with her newest kids’s book, rather than a vacation seasonal that’s been performed to death. (She did note, nevertheless, that anyone who does not delight in Christmas music need to be “evil,” so her viewpoint may somewhat vary on that point.)

5. Since Clarkson carried out a stripped-down variation of “Piece by Piece” on American Idol in 2016, that’s been the variation of the song that individuals most wish to hear, and she delivered on the song’s feeling accompanied just by keyboardist Jason Halbert. It was a raw and susceptible moment from a vocalist who’s always personalized and relatable in show.

5 thoughts: Guns N’ Roses at T-Mobile Arena (November 17).

1. Guns N’ Roses’ former reputation for extreme tardiness (which was primarily just lead singer Axl Rose’s reputation) has turned into something like extreme punctuality, however plenty of fans plainly were surprised when the band took the stage simply 15 minutes after the program’s listed start time, with no opening act. The empty seats rapidly filled up, though, and Rose and his bandmates bet a marathon (and rather exhausting) three and a half hours, ending ideal around the time among their shows might have drawn back in the ’90s.

2. The last time GNR remained in town, in April 2016, it was for the kick-off of the still-running Not in This Lifetime semi-reunion tour, bringing Rose back together with fellow original members Slash (guitar) and Duff McKagan (bass), together with bandmates who have actually been working with Rose considering that Slash and McKagan left. That program was excellent, but the band has actually clearly gotten tighter since then, as well as increasing its endurance, sounding excellent from the first notes of “It’s So Easy” through the last notes of “Paradise City,” the older members fitting together seamlessly with the later additions.

3. Also back in April 2016, Rose was recovering from a broken foot and carried out the entire program sitting down, however this time he nearly never stopped moving, as well as with all the effort, his voice still sounded great. Rose’s regular (as in, almost each song) mid-show breaks have become part of his mystique, however whatever he does backstage every few minutes to revitalize himself, it deserves it if it enables him to wail through epics like “Separated” and “Coma” sounding almost as powerful as he did 25 years ago.

4. 3 and a half hours left a lot of space for a variety of product, including six tunes from 2008 pre-reunion album Chinese Democracy, which were boosted a bit by remarkable lead guitar work from Slash, but there was just a lot he could provide for plodding dirges like “Prostitute” and “Sorry.” A minimum of punchy rockers “Better” and the album’s title track have semi-decent hooks.

5. The band also included a whole lot of covers– from GNR hits like Paul McCartney’s “Live and Let Pass Away” and Bob Dylan’s “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door” to show staples like The Who’s “The Hunter” and Pink Floyd’s “Desire You Were Here” (an instrumental with dueling guitar solos from Slash and Richard Fortus). The holdover tributes to Glen Campbell (“Wichita Lineman”) and Chris Cornell (“Great Void Sun”) were fascinating left-field tune choices, but felt a little out of location, particularly since they were presented without comment. Surely there are at least some classic pictures of the band members socializing with Cornell that could have been displayed on the video screens?

Five thoughts: Nine Inch Nails at the Joint (October 20).

1. Over the last few years, 9 Inch Nails shows have actually been as significant for their complex visual discussion as for their music, however at this one-off show, the most elaborate phase element was streamers hanging from numerous instruments and microphone stands. Without the light show, the focus was completely on the music, and the band maximized it.

2. Although there have been 2 NIN EPs (Not the Actual Occasions and Include Violence) released in the previous year, the set was mostly focused on popular hits, drawing just 2 songs from each of the EPs and rather showcasing long time favorites like “Terrible Lie,” “Closer,” “Desire,” “March of the Pigs” and more, to the audience’s passionate reaction.

3. NIN’s 2017 shows are the very first with Atticus Ross, a longtime partner of NIN mastermind Trent Reznor, as a live entertainer, and the very first given that Reznor revealed Ross as the only other irreversible band member considering that NIN’s creation. Despite his apparent significant impact, Ross fit in flawlessly with the other veteran live NIN players, chilling behind his keyboard rig and most significantly including some loud intensity to the prolonged coda of “The Great Destroyer.”

4. When Reznor revealed that the band will cover a David Bowie tune and he hoped they would do it justice, they could have quickly launched into any of the frequently covered Bowie classics that have actually become much more prevalent since the singer’s death. Rather they broke out a moody variation of “I Cannot Provide Whatever Away,” from Bowie’s 2016 farewell album Blackstar.

5. “We value you coming out eleventh hour,” Reznor stated to the crowd that might have been somewhat larger had actually the program been revealed more than a few weeks in advance. However the program never ever felt hurried, and the band never sounded anything however polished, whether on brand-new songs or somewhat fine-tuned variations of old favorites.