Concert Review: Phoenix, October 22, Ricoh Coliseum

Toronto – Remember when you were 17 and your favourite boy band was making a stop in Toronto at the ACC. You took the GO train into Toronto for the big night and probably went to Jack Astors for dinner before the big show. Then you found your way eagerly to your severely overpriced seats among the other 20,000 rabid fans. You sat there through the opening band because doors opened at 7PM and you didn’t want to miss anything. When the band finally appeared your ears were assaulted with shrill screams and you spend the next hour singing at the top of your lungs to a well-rehearsed pop band highlighted by an even more well-timed light show.

Now, reduce the venue size and replace rabid fans for indifferent kids, more interested in standing in beer lines than seeing the band play. This was Phoenix at Ricoh coliseum.

Phoenix has rocketed to stardom and managed to score a Grammy for their Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix album largely due to their anthemic pop sound. I would describe them as a hybrid of Coldplay and U2. The French band has been touring for 18 months, limiting their ability to create new material, so their set list has remained pretty static. Shockingly, they opened with Lisztomania, their first single.

About halfway through the performance the lights dimmed and a large white curtain fell down in front of the band. Silhouetted, they played Love like a Sunset, one of their only instrumental songs. The curtain was finally drawn at the song’s climax, adding a dramatic element to the song’s long build-up.

In the latter half of the show all of a sudden half of the band disappeared from the stage. We thought this was the end of their show but after recovering from the menacing strobe lights, noticed people on the floor flocking to the soundboard where 3 members of the band were standing. Here they played acoustic versions of Big Sun, Love For Granted and a French folk song (because they’re in Canada, non?). The band was shrouded in darkness save for one spotlight highlighting their location. Despite this pleasant surprise, the crowd (outside of the floor) was barely paying attention at this point.

As always Phoenix closed with 1901 and the band kept playing while the lead singer hopped into the crowd and surfed among fans, brave man.

Lizstomania (Classixx Version)- Phoenix by Classixx (Official)

Posted on by sarahw in Concerts

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