Tag Archives: world tour

REVIEW: Nightwish Celebrates Decades of Music at Marquee Theatre 4-15-18

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Tempe, AZ – On April 15th, Nightwish enchanted the Marquee Theatre with their music, and also delighted fans with a free two-disc CD of their Decades album featuring an archive of songs from 1996-2015 to celebrate their “DECADES: WORLD TOUR 2018”. For those unaware of Nightwish, they are a symphonic metal band from Finland. The band was formed by keyboardist Tuomas Holopainen, guitarist Emppu Vuorinen, and former lead singer Tarja Turunen in 1996. In 2005, Nightwish said goodbye to Turunen. In 2012, Nightwish had to say goodbye to a second lead singer, Anette Olzon, but former Revamp singer Floor Jansen graciously filled in to finish the North American tour that year. Since then, Jansen became the lead vocalist for Nightwish’s album Endless Forms Most Beautiful and continues to tour with the band.

It was a cool night in Tempe, fans entered the venue and filled the entire floor. Everyone patiently waited for the music to begin. Nightwish greeted the fans with an audio recording, asking fans to go back to simpler times when they would not use phones to take pictures and videos during the show. They wanted everyone to enjoy the moment. Many phones went dark, but some fans couldn’t resist the urge to take a few shots of their favorite band. After that message, a one minute countdown began. As the seconds dropped to single digits, the crowd began to shout as each second decreased. Once it hit zero, the screen changed to gears, and one by one, the members of Nightwish took the stage, greeted by cheers.

Nightwish - Photography: Andrea Stoica
Floor Jansen (Vocalist), Nightwish
Photography
 Andrea Stoica © All Rights Reserved

Being Nightwish’s “Decades” tour, they picked their greatest hits from all eight of their studio albums. Nightwish didn’t achieve popularity in the United States until their 2004 album Once, and it sold more than one million copies. The biggest hit single from Once, “Wish I Had an Angel”, received MTV airplay and was the second song on their set list that night. As the first chords played, the crowd clapped and screamed. One fan held his hands to his face, in awe of the live performance he beheld. As Jansen sang, the video board had the well-known angel statue from the album cover seen through a gate, as if we were entering a cemetery.

As the first four songs played, fans mouthed the words and jumped to the beat. The video screen went perfectly with each song. For “10th Man Down”, the video soared over gravestones. For “The Kinslayer”, the video showed red candles as crimson light illuminated the band.

Nightwish - Photography: Andrea Stoica
Floor Jansen (Vocalist), Nightwish
Photography:
Andrea Stoica © All Rights Reserved

Before starting their fifth song, “Gethsemane” from the album Oceanborn, Jansen spoke to the fans, welcoming everyone to the “Decades” tour. She said she spotted some familiar faces in the crowd. The last time Nightwish visited the Marquee was May 2, 2015 for their “Endless Forms Most Beautiful Tour”. Jansen then asked who was seeing them for the first time. Hands all around the venue went up. Jansen smiled and said, “Buckle up. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.

Nightwish - Photography: Andrea Stoica
Emppu Vuorinen (Guitarist), Nightwish
Photography:
Andrea Stoica © All Rights Reserved

The band grew quiet for a moment as Jansen addressed the crowd before going into the beloved song “I Want My Tears Back”, from the album Imaginaerum; she said “Tempe is already warm, but let’s make it hot!” During the uilleann pipes solo midway through the song, Jansen urged the crowd to dance and throw their fists in the air. Jansen herself danced on stage and then said, “Tempe! Turn this place into a volcano!” After the song concluded, Jansen spoke again, “It is hard to dance in a volcano. You did a good job though. Thank you!

It was vocalist and bass/acoustic guitarist Marco Hietala’s turn to address the crowd. He had a smile a mile wide as he asked, “How are you doing?” The crowd cheered and people put up devil horns to show their excitement. Hietala laughed and said again, “I’m not quite sure yet. How are you doing?” The crowd screamed louder. “Sounds like we’re having fun. Ready to rock!” Hietala replied as the song “Devil & the Deep Dark Ocean” from the album Oceanborn filled the air.

Nightwish - Photography: Andrea Stoica
Marco Hietala (Bassist, Vocalist), Nightwish
Photography:
Andrea Stoica © All Rights Reserved

What a night. It’s good to be back,” Jansen said later, “This one’s for the dreamers.” Just then, the instrumental of “Slaying the Dreamer”, from the album Century Child, swelled into the room.

Nightwish had an incredible nineteen-song set, and the fans were full of joy for every single note and lyric. After Nightwish finished their last song for the night, “Ghost Love Score” from the album Once, they left the stage, and in the darkness fans cried out for more. The band members came back to take a final bow and toss some lucky fans guitar picks and drum sticks. Nightwish had done it again — amazed another crowd and filled their hearts with beautiful music.

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Photographer: Andrea Stoica

Nightwish – Marquee Theatre 4-15-18

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Photography © Andrea Stoica. All Rights Reserved

REVIEW: P!nk Launches Into World Tour in an Unforgettable Performance at Talking Stick Arena 3-1-18

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PHOENIX P!nk kicked off her Beautiful Trauma World Tour in an unreal musical experience that rocked the Valley of the Sun. Following the release of her seventh studio album, aptly named Beautiful Trauma, came the announcement that she would hit the road once again to share her exquisite sound with the world. With anticipation of her first album release in five years, it came as no surprise that the Phoenix show was completely sold out. Fans flooded Talking Stick Arena, sporting the artist’s color in everything from bedazzled wigs to homemade jumpsuits. Inside the arena KidCutUp could be heard spinning his usual mashup of hip hop and party songs in order to rouse the crowd before the main act.

P!NK - Photo Credit: Katherine Amy Vega
P!NK
Photography: Katherine Amy Vega © Kataklizmic Design. All Rights Reserved

From start to finish, P!nk put on a show that left the crowd wanting more, even after a 21-song setlist. Her energy is tangible as soon as she appears before the crowd, launching into the show with one of her biggest hits of all time “Get the Party Started.” What was seen as the curtain dropped at the start of the song could only be described as unbelievable. Breathtaking acrobatics featuring her in a full body sequined jumpsuit paired with incredible dance numbers involving an array of mobile props on stage and back-up dancers. It made for a mind-blowing start to what would be a truly unforgettable set.

Paying ode to her newest album release, P!nk segued straight into “Beautiful Trauma,” serenading the audience with her haunting lyrics before taking them right back in time with old favorites like “Just Like a Pill” and “Who Knew?”

Hello!”, she shouted into the mic, taking a moment to address the audience, “I can’t believe tonight’s finally here! Just like you guys, I have no idea what’s going to happen!” Her excitement rang through the arena, the frenzied crowd cheering the whole time. That energy remained, with those on stage and those in the crowd, for the entire performance. She played several more songs off of her new album such as “Revenge”, “Barbies”, and “I Am Here”, while also including additional top hits “Try” and “Just Like Fire.” Whether old fan or new, everyone in the arena was able to sing along.

P!NK - Photo Credit: Katherine Amy Vega
P!NK
Photography: Katherine Amy Vega © Kataklizmic Design. All Rights Reserved

P!nk collaborated with artists such as Eminem and Phoenix’s own Nate Ruess, who both made appearances in creative ways. A video of Ruess was displayed on a screen, while Eminem was made into an enormous inflatable puppet that was guided across the stage by her dancers as P!nk sang along beside it.  

One thing that makes P!nk stand out as a performer amongst others is that each song is, in and of itself, like a unique mini concert. From the band to the dancers and backup vocals, there was a passion that could be felt from all of them. Beautiful costumes were accompanied by expert dance sequences and enormous, detailed props were used on and off the stage to help create a multi-level experience. With each new song came a sense of wonder as to what magic would take over the stage next.

Another thing that makes her stand out as an artist is her fierce dedication to being herself and her love for people. Throughout the show, she takes time to shed light on important messages and reminds everyone about things like love and unity, connecting with her fans on a level unlike many other music artists.

P!NK - Photo Credit: Katherine Amy Vega
P!NK
Photography: Katherine Amy Vega © Kataklizmic Design. All Rights Reserved

As the show neared its end, she amped the energy up to the maximum level and brought the crowd to its feet once again with her smash hits “Raise Your Glass” “Blow Me (One Last Kiss)” and “So What.” She spent a majority of that time soaring far and wide throughout the arena sporting her same sequined jumpsuit. Lights flashed in every direction as confetti shot from mini cannons on stage. Fans watched in wonder as she flipped through the air past all of the sections. “Thank you all, remember to love one another,” she said as she was lowered to the ground for the final time.

Concertgoers left amazed with the show they had just witnessed, although it was clear that they would have stayed all night if they could. P!nk puts on a performance unlike any other artist in today’s music scene, and that is partially due to the immense love she has for her fans and a driving desire to make a difference in the world. She truly is the beauty and strength that resonates in her music, and she uses that as a driving force to give her beloved fans an unforgettable experience.

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by Katherine Amy Vega

P!NK – Talking Stick Resort Arena 3-1-18

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