Rascal Flatts & Sheryl Crow Crowd at Cruzan Amphitheatre Booed Obama

Categories: Concert Review

Sayre Berman

Cruzan Amphitheatre was packed this past Saturday, but it a was a far cry from the last time I was at the venue for Warped Tour. Instead of punks sporting converse and piercings in every orifice, it was cowboy boot-palooza up in there, with daisy duke-clad gals waiting with bated breath for Sheryl Crow and Rascal Flatts.

After getting over the initial culture shock of feeling like we'd stepped into a rodeo (I swear I didn't know that many people in South Florida owned cowboy boots) my friend and I got to our seats, ready for some twang.

Opening act Gloriana, which hails from Nashville, got early arrivers in the mood with some catchy country tunes and sweet vocals. The guitarist was surprisingly talented and made an impression with his passionate rock style. The trio played a short but high energy set including two of its bigger tunes "Wild At Heart" and "(Kissed You) Good Night," which got the crowd singing along and dancing.

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Washed Out - Culture Room, Fort Lauderdale - September 13

Categories: Concert Review

James Argyropoulos

As eager as I was to see Washed Out, I was almost more curious to see how an audience would react to the music live.

The brainchild of Ernest Greene, this Athens, Georgia act creates an intimate, synth heavy ambience that seems more fitting heard through a pair of earbuds than in the communal setting of a live venue. How would a crowd respond in public to chillwave? Zone out in a dream like trance with the occasional bob of the head? Dance erotically with one finger in the air another in their mouths without making eye contact with anyone?

See also: Washed Out at Culture Room in Fort Lauderdale (Slideshow)

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Kings of Leon - Cruzan Amphitheatre, West Palm Beach - September 6

Categories: Concert Review

Sayre Berman

This past Saturday was an unusually muggy night at West Palm's Cruzan Amphitheatre, even for Florida. The air had the consistency of peanut butter. Maxi dresses and shirts clung to audience members at the Kings of Leon show, all wet from sweat and humidity. And God bless the brave souls who wore jeans. We commend you.

After the London band of brothers Kongos and indie rockers Young the Giant finished their sets, Tennessee's Kings of Leon jump started its set with "Supersoaker," the first song off of its newest album Mechanical Bull.

See also: Kings of Leon and Young the Giant at Cruzan Amphitheater (Slideshow)

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Drake Vs. Lil Wayne Is the Softest Show of Life

Categories: Concert Review

Sayre Berman
Drake asks the crowd, "Who's the softest of 'em all?" Well, not really.

Each year, Big Ghost Ltd, as "Ghostface Killah" does the world a great service by creating a well-crafted and deeply contemplated list documenting the "10 Softest Niggas (or Rappers) in the Game." This July, the sixth annual hit the interwebs. Drake naturally made number three in 2014 and number two in 2013. That year, he described Drizzy as: "Drake aka the Patron Saint of Tenderness aka the Human Glee Episode aka The Inventor of the Audio Scrunchie aka the Merchant of Cuddles otherwise known as The Wizard of Pause." In 2011, Drake scored spots one, two, and three on the list. This is why the internet doesn't suck.

I had already read a review of Drake Vs Lil Wayne before attending the bromantic rappers' show Wednesday night at Cruzan Amphitheatre in West Palm Beach. So I knew what was coming, like word for word. The two throw jabs at each other, soft-ass insults, and sometime during the middle, the audience votes for one or the other to win the battle through an app. Lil Wayne rightfully won this show. But it's probably rigged, because the crowd cheered more for Drizzy.

I'll talk about that more later, but first, I want to address the idea of softness in hip-hop and explore the way that softness was exemplified by these YMCMB superstars.

See also: Drake Vs. Lil Wayne at Cruzan Amphitheater in West Palm Beach

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Deep Purple - Hard Rock Live, Hollywood - August 31

Categories: Concert Review

Photo by Orlovic via Wikipedia Commons

Deep Purple

Hard Rock Live at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino

August 31, 2014

Better than: Anyone might have had a right to expect.

It took awhile before the crowd was treated to one of the most famous riffs in rock history, the one that goes "Dum dum duuuuum... dumdum de dum de dum... dum dum duuuuuum dum de daah...," that of course being the immortal intro to "Smoke on the Water," the signature song that marked Deep Purple's ascent into hard-rock hierarchy. And while many of those in attendance held their breath waiting for that immortal refrain, there was, fortunately, plenty to keep them satisfied until that moment.

See also: Deep Purple: "The Word 'Classic' Hangs Around Your Neck Like a Noose"

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Slash with Myles Kennedy & the Conspirators - Hard Rock, Hollywood - August 29

Categories: Concert Review

Sayre Berman

I've been a Guns N' Roses fan since acquiring a cassette copy of Appetite for Destruction from a record store at the Centro Comercial Ciudad Tamanaco in Caracas back in 1988. I've been a fan of their recorded catalog up to the much maligned Spaghetti Incident. This means I've always associated GN'R with Slash's guitar. But I never got into his Snakepit or super group Velvet Revolver (or any other post-GN'R acts by the original members for that matter). So, truth be told, I did not know what to expect from Slash and company at his concert this past Friday at Hard Rock Live in Hollywood.

See also: Slash Keeps Rock and Roll Alive at Hard Rock Live on August 29

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Michael McDonald and Toto - Hard Rock Live, Hollywood - August 20

Categories: Concert Review


Chances are, when you heard that Michael McDonald and Toto were coheadlining the stage at Hard Rock Live last night, you didn't wet yourself with anticipation. Of course, if you're on the older end of the geriatric spectrum, then perhaps you did wee a little.

Unlike you, I was very excited to hear Michael McDonald singing in the same space as myself. There's room for argument here, but I'd say no singer in the history of music is more fun to imitate than this guy. He's just so very Michael McDonald. And you'd definitely be lying if you said his distinctive baritone never gave you chills, not ever, not once.

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The Offspring, Bad Religion, Pennywise - Cruzan Amphitheatre, West Palm Beach - August 15

Categories: Concert Review

Jessica Daly

Stop-and-go afterwork traffic lined the way out to Cruzan Amphitheatre Friday night. The road was packed with people out to see Stiff Little Fingers, Pennywise, Bad Religion, and the Offspring on a balmy summer night.

Surprisingly, the lawn was closed off and only seats-seats were available. Well, seats and the most important area of the evening, the moshing section. Before buying our $16 tacos but after buying booze, we walked to our spot and found only a fence separating us from the pit, but we had a few veterans in our group that could handle the onslaught of sweaty slamming bodies on their way.

Irish punks Stiff Little Fingers opened the night to a small but eager crowd. The band jammed hard and proved that age clearly is nothing but a number by running around the stage just like little kids. After hearing songs like "Nobody's Hero" and "When We Were Young," we were pretty sure they also sounded this good back in 1977. After a quick introduction of band members and a final tune, the group left the stage and made way for Pennywise.

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Linkin Park, Thirty Seconds to Mars, Carnivores Tour - Cruzan Amphitheatre, West Palm Beach - August 8

Categories: Concert Review

Sayre Berman

Thirty Seconds to Mars took the stage a little earlier than scheduled this past Friday night at Cruzan Amphitheatre in West Palm Beach. Fans hungrily lurking about the Carnivores tour's merch table and those grabbing their second round of beers ran back to their seats to provide Jared Leto and co. with a very warm welcome.

The man who doesn't age, Leto, rushed out donning a gold crown and what looked like a priestly purple robe, nothing exceptionally new for a guy whose well known for being a little eccentric. He bears a great resemblance to a white Jesus with his long hair, full beard, and that angelic mug. The ecclesiastical getup highlighted his holy, natural look.

See also: Linkin Park and 30 Seconds to Mars (Slideshow)

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Linkin Park's Chester Bennington on New Album: "We Wanted to Make a Statement"

Photographer Brandon Cox

Linkin Park has been putting out rock-rap tunes for over a decade and recently returned with an album that promises a return to the heavier shit. The band is currently showcasing their new album The Hunting Party with 30 Seconds to Mars and openers AFI on the Carnivores tour. Before they hit West Palm Beach, we got the opportunity to jump on a group call with Chester Bennington and Mike Shinoda.

On the afternoon of June 22, in Venutra, California, Linkin Park played a surprise set for an overwhelmingly large crowd at the twentieth anniversary Warped tour. Shinoda explained how the idea of playing this pop-up stage came about. A friend who works with people on Warped Tour did some introducing of bands, and the idea evolved from there.

See also: We Like Linkin Park, and We Will Not Apologize

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