Here's a slideshow from the concert.
Fillmore Miami Beach, Miami
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
Despite everyone's hopes that a Phoenix/Daft Punk collaboration would become a nightly event, there were no robots at the Fillmore last night. But there was something else: a damned good show.
After the dimming lights signaled the brink of the show, enough smoke filled the venue to stage a rendition of Phantom of the Opera.
The synths blared like a jet engine, and the strobe lights were on full
blast. The onset felt like something in between a rave and the Blue Man
Group, but it was clearly a rock show when the crowd started belting
the lyrics to "Lisztomania" at the show's onset.
Phoenix had all guns blazing with a relentless salvo of catchy tunes. The band stuck primarily to more mainstream hits such as "Lisztomania" and "Girlfriend." It all sounded album quality. Drummer Thomas Hedlund kept metronome time similar to Dave Grohl's Nirvana years, and Robin Coudert and Jonathan Chavez's synth work rounded out the mix, completely filling out the Fillmore.
As Phoenix began the second half of the set, its polish from a decade of touring was clear. At the start of "Love Like a Sunset, Part 1," a white curtain fell from the ceiling to the floor, masking everything on the stage except a silhouette of guitarist Christian Mazzalai and singer Thomas Mars. While behind the curtain, Phoenix played around with eerie guitar sounds, a bevy of keyboard voices, and Auto-Tune (tasteful Auto-Tune). As the breakdown of "Love Like a Sunset, Part 1," and "Part 2" finally hit its climax, the curtain fell to the floor, with the band segueing into "Too Young."
After playing some older songs such as "Consolation Prize" and "If I Ever Feel Better," Mars thanked the crowd while remarking that this concert marks the close of a very long tour. For the penultimate song, Mars was backed by only an acoustic guitar in his performance of a French song; I couldn't catch the song's name, but it was certainly a lonesome tear-jerker. Finally, Phoenix closed the set with an extended performance of "1901." With his microphone in hand, Mars left the stage and ventured deep into the audience as reverb filled the room. As the final chords rang through, Mars crowd-surfed back to the stage over the distance of about a hundred feet -- and hundreds of sweaty hands.
Overheard: "Wait... how do they speak French?" by a girl
wearing sunglasses, an American Apparel tank top, and perspiration. Way
too much perspiration.
The crowd: Way more heterogeneous than the line at Liv. The attendance
yuppies, mustached hipsters, and a few middle-aged guys crushing
Miller Lights in the cheap seats. The excitement level remained high
from start to finish, and nearly everyone sang along to the older tunes
in addition to the Wolfgang cuts. Too many people were wearing
sunglasses inside (I
guess it was kind of bright... kinda). Aside from mostly being Floridians, their only
other common ground was snagging a ticket before it sold out. Getting
such a salmagundi to sing together is nothing short of a
Springsteenian feat, and Phoenix pulled it off in spades.
Personal bias: There are few "indie" bands -- indie used lightly -- with songs catchy enough
to make it onto a car commercial while unique enough to be raved about
on music blogs (ahem).
Long Distance Call
Love Like a Sunset, Part 1
Love Like a Sunset, Part 2
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If I Ever Feel Better
[French Song: Funky Squaredance] (editors note: Je ne parle pas francais)