Monday, May 7, 2012

Red Hot Chili Peppers LIVE in Newark, NJ: Two Nights of AWESOME

My awesome fiancé outdid himself yet again; for my birthday back in february he surprised me to not one, but TWO sets of Red Hot Chili Peppers concert tickets. He knows how much I love them so it was an obvious gift, but still! totally unexpected. Three months later, two days after the shows, and I'm still in shock. The whole weekend was just so surreal.

Sleigh Bells opened for RHCP both nights, and will be with them for the rest of the east coast leg of the tour. I found out about them when I used to work for Urban Outfitters; Treats was on heavy rotation, but I didn't mind. They're loud, fun, and filled with so much bass I had to find out more about them. I was SO BUMMED only because they're new, so not enough material to fill my aching needs. But alas! Their second album Reign of Terror is out just in time to promote it by opening for RHCP. How awesome is that?! 

I might have been the only fan of theirs in the section, but people were diggin' it. You may be asking,"Hey wait isn't there only two people in Sleigh Bells?" I later found out that the second guitarist is Jason Boyer who plays with them on tour. Honestly I couldn't tell Boyer and Miller apart--they had similar haircuts and style and everything. They played eleven or twelve tracks evenly split between the two albums they have out. Their set included a simple striped banner in the background and of course, their twelve Marshall amps, stacked in all their glory. Who needs twelve amps? No one, but it was awesome. 

Both Sleigh Bells and RHCP dedicated their performances for the 5/4 show to the late Adam MCA Yauch. Beastie Boys tracks were played before, during intermission, and after the show. Kiedis had MCA written on his shirt, as well. A sad day for the music industry and beastie boys fans was turned into a celebration of a wonderful life at this concert. I think this gave both bands extra motivation to kick ass on stage.
As I'm writing this post and I get to the part where I tell you about Red Hot Chili Peppers, my heart rate  increases and I can't breath. This should give you an idea of how glorious these shows were. I prefer the setlist of the first show over the second while Zack prefers the second over the first--they were both just too good. Both nights I think maybe a fourth of the songs were from their newest album. What really got me was they went all the way back to the days of SIR PSYCHO SEXY from Blood Sugar Sex Magik in addition to songs from Californication, By The Way, and Stadium Arcadium. The Friday night show I swear they knew I was in the audience because of all the songs in their discography, they did two of my favorite tracks, "Throw Away Your Television," and "Higher Ground." Not only that, but they also played "Did I Let You Know" with a bari sax solo thrown in there.

They were the fun loving band I always thought they would be on stage--skipping around, hanging from the lights, walking on their hands....I loved every single shenanigan they pulled. After "Under the Bridge" Flea goes, "That was a pretty gentle song. We'd like to take a moment for all the little babies who are trying to get to sleep and all the old ladies who need it quiet 'cause it's getting very late. They're very old, so we'd like to play the most quiet, mellow song. But not me for me when I was a new born baby my mother had to play me Black Flag to get me to sleep. Anyways what we're trying to say is we're going to play the slowest, quietest thing we've ever played right now," then promptly go into "Goodbye Hooray." I see what you did there, Flea.

The graphics they had on the screens above and behind them were pretty impressive and matched up with each song perfectly. My personal favorite was the boy riding the horse. Prior to the show they took pictures of some of the attendees across from the merch table to display in the last song, which was "Give It Away." I didn't see Zack nor did I see me (pout!) but it was still a really cool idea. 

My one and only tiny complaint about their performances was the lack of audible harmonies. Frusciante had that sweet sweet falsetto that I fear could never be matched. Josh can do it, and he was, but it just wasn't loud enough to hear. Other than that, both shows in my eyes was flawless. I am SO thankful to my fiancé Zack for giving me one of the best weekends of my life. All together now, "awwww"

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