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Friday, July 9, 2010

Concert Review: Usher Concert July 9 - and he doesn't take off his shirt - HARANG

I promised myself never to watch another concert in MOA but still, I watch. No choice e. And tonight exemplified why I shouldn't watch another show there!

It was sweltering hot, for there was almost no sea breeze. And the crowd management tonight was terrible! Just as we exited, we were met by this terrible stench of excrement, as in TAE, so nauseating I had to run up the gilid of SMX only to find out I had to jump over a ledge about my height. Now, I had to be Wonder Woman too! Apparently, they cordoned off 4/5 of the road so that Usher can exit! Yikes!! Talk about causing a stampede!! I never know why concert organizers treat good paying clients as cattle! We smelled like one and I did feel like one tonight!

Oh well, that of course was not the show so to be fair to Usher naman, his show tonight had some high points but not enough to sustain a feeling of euphoria in the end, which is really surprising to me since he's already a veteran in the live scene. No wonder his previous concerts were really not given much feedback. For an artist as accomplished as he is, his concert earnings are not that big. I now know why.

Don't get me wrong. His dance moves were impeccable, beautiful even! This guy can really dance! And he has sex appeal too! And he has a wonderful voice, very clear, very strong, although tonight, I admit, he did 'cheat' in many songs, opting for the recorded material to sing more, but I can give him leeway, he has to rest his voice from time to time, and anyway, he did some belting naman in some songs so that part can be forgiven.

Also, towards the last part, he opted not to do some songs in full, when in other reviews, they said he did. Was he just lazier tonight? Or maybe a bit tired? The show started around 9:20PM and my driver picked me up at FF MOA at 10:45PM. It was really a short show! Oh well, at least I did not pay 12T for it like Ruffa, Paolo, Oyo, Nina and the other celebrities, who were, irritatingly being shown again and again. Not their fault but that of the cameramen. And Ruffa sat down. She didn't even bother to stand up. Oh well.....

I love the first segment when he opened up with 'Caught Up' and then 'U Make Me Wanna" and 'U Remind Me' which was a really strong beginning for any show! Then I fell asleep. Then he does "Confessions', 'My Boo' and 'Burn' which revved up the audience again. And I fell asleep again, only to be reawakend by the bass sounds of 'Little Freak' - and he couldn't even be bothered to sing it!! It irritated me a lot! I was so looking forward to him singing it! And then he segues, "I Need A Girl' and another hit song of his whose title escapes me now and he doesn't do the whole song. Parang he just wanted the show to end agad.

However, he did 'She Don't Know' naman and 'There Goes My Baby' and 'Daddy's Home', new material from his new CD, which was ok na for me, and he sang all of them whole naman.
Then suddenly, 'Yeah' na, which again revvs up the audience then another pause, before he does 'OMG" which everyone apparently likes. Oh oh oh oh!!

I love his fans though! Where I was, the girls around me could sing his songs, complete lyrics! Nakakawindang! And they did it for many songs! Talk about being real fans! And that was good for me since I can sing along with them, albeit, only to the parts of the songs I know the lyrics of. But I love singing along and that was definitely one of the highlights of the night!

Well, the pauses, and there were several tonight, really just destroys the momentum. So I don't blame the audience if they get subdued from time to time. Usher can certainly learn from the Madonna, 'How to do a Live Show' book, and keep things flowing, even if he is not onstage. The band was competent and the dancers were capable so if he wanted to rest, they can take the stage for him, even for 5 minutes per segment of the show. But don't pause in total darkness and total silence. Sometimes we wonder if he just fell of the stage somewhere.

I just reviewed the videos again and yes, the energy tonight was good, even though I could barely dance since we were like sardines there. Hopefully the pauses disappear next time and maybe shuffle the songs around and make sure it reaches a wonderful climax in the end! He has so so many hits to choose from, I wonder why his musical director chose to arrange it this way tonight. Maybe 2 more fast and famous songs before Yeah, and we didn't even notice him exit or say bye so everyone just waited for OMG. OMG is actually the perfect encore song because of the energy but the energy and excitement has to be created first leading to it. People can't shout and be quiet and then shout again and be quiet again. It's unnatural. He said he likes it here and hopefully he does come back, but get a better musical director next time, someone who can show your full repertoire (dude, you have lots of hits) in a clear segmented manner.

And next time, SHIRT OFF please!! We are not Malaysia!!