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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

CONCERT REVIEW: Daughtry Rocks Eastwood

I rarely go to Eastwood City for the plain reason of inconvenience. I would have to pass through the narrow and traffic-ridden Crame and then negotiate a U-turn in Libis that allows only one car to pass through at any given time. Tonight, it took us 20 minutes to reach Libis, but 30 minutes to pass through that darn U-turn. I'm surprised the Megaworld people haven't noticed that problem. Maybe they already have enough business from the Marikina and Pasig people. Oh well, even if I lived just across at Green Meadows, the thought of having to fight through that U-turn just to have coffee at Eastwood would not be worth the effort.

But tonight, we had to be there because Daughtry was performing. Vic was the kontrabida tonight because he could not believe I would spend so much on tickets on an American Idol contestant. Frankly, I do not really care about AI, Daughtry's music just appealed to me and him being a contestant was just incidental, and maybe was his ticket to the big time. Of course, as soon as the night ended, Vic was quite impressed with Daughtry's performance, a far cry from Chris' timid days at AI.

Last year, around this time, I asked my piano teacher to help me play 'Home', a song that just grew on me the more I heard it. That was after I mastered, the High School Musical theme, 'Your Are the Music in Me'. I think the appeal of Chris Daughtry is to make his music and lyrics accessible to people - none of the angst common among his younger peers, nothing subversive like Marilyn Manson - but in my opinion, a more edgy pop-rock sound with lyrics that appeal to an emotional level to most people.

The seats in the venue were placed pretty close to each other. I was actually wondering how we would be enjoying the show as the seats were really really close to each other. Also, it was done in open air, so it was pretty warm, but due to the rains yesterday, it was not humid, it was good evening warm weather. Byy the second song, Daughtry asked everyone to stand so the problem was solved, as I asked Vic to stand on my seat, so there would be space for me to move. Celebrities, well, two basketball players were there from our generation - Jeffrey Carioso (he looked heavyset already) and Benjie Paras (he still looked yummy as ever and he's 4 years older than me - it's so unfair!)

He can hold his own against so-called "real" rock stars. His voice is very strong, gravel-y, sounds even better than the album. Funny thing though was when he sang "Feels Like Tonight", there was a part where he sang totally totally off key. Then he gestured to his earphones, so maybe he could not hear himself anymore or something. It sounded funny because the song is a hit and of course, we know what the note would be at most parts of the song, so for him not to hit the note, well, results to bewilderment. To be fair to him though, he did hit almost 90% of the high notes of most of his songs. Sometimes, we fans can be unforgiving to them, but yeah yeah, we know you have to sing almost every other day so we forgive you if you miss some notes or two. The reason why we can hear him well was that the venue was very intimate. I suspect just about 2000 people all in all, so everything is really up close. Not too much space for mistakes.

The band, like Chris, was also superb! Each song done to effect! Daughtry sang my two favorite songs in the beginning, I think, the second (Breakdown) and the fourth song (Used To), so my night was already ok by then. Interestingly, my favorite part of the show was when he sang What About Now, a song which my part of the audience knew the lyrics to, and we were singing it along with him. I loved the way he sang it! Also, I loved how he did the last song, the rockin' There and Back Again - superb guitar work and impressive growling, hahaha! That was the last song of the encore, which he began with his biggest hit Home.

Of course, the fun did not end there. Our exit just happened to be very near the exit of the band too, so we behaved like real fans and waited for the band to come out, which they did in about 20 minutes. Well, ladies, Chris is not tall at all. I am even taller than him, to Vic and my surprise. The only guy in the band taller than me was one of the guitarists. Oh well.....he had the voice...and the presence though. Like most bands and foreign acts who come here, the rousing audience appreciation has certainly moved Daughtry too. I guess one reason why Avril Lavigne and Alicia Keys are coming back for the second time here is precisely I guess the wonderful audience response they got first time they came here. You can't fake that.

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