Blacksburg, VA — I guess you could say I was surprised by Maroon 5’s performance last night (11/10/09). At the same time, it was more or less what I expected. Never before have my feelings towards a band changed so many times in one concert. I went to the show with an open mind, ready to get past the female obsessive boy-band stereotype… if they could prove themselves. This was especially true because my father had seen them at Live 8 a few years ago and said they were actually pretty good.
Their first songs were pure bad-assness. The lead singer, Adam Levine, had tattoos on his arms and was making sexually crude jokes most of the time. They topped off the middle of their set with a two minute long epic drum solo. While the drummer, Ryan Dusick, wailed away the band took a knee and watched as he left the audience in awe. I’ve seen my fair share of awesome drum solos done by great drummers (ex: Travis Barker and Mike Portnoy) and this was on par with their work. While he didn’t lift off the stage in a godlike manor, or have a multi-kit drum set, he did an impressive job.
Unfortunately, the solo left Dursick tired. So, while he was backstage recuperating, the band did some of their songs acoustically. Admittedly, I’m not the biggest fan of acoustical guitar songs. Regardless, this is the scheduled intermission in their set, a point made obvious when they started to cover Alisha Keys’ Beautiful. My ears bled for the duration of the song and left me distracted for the remainder of the acoustical songs.
Fortunately, they were able to redeem themselves. Following the acoustical portion of the show, Levine brought up a female audience member to give her his stool (stage prop). When she sat down on the stool, he proceeded to offer her a lap dance. The crowd was roaring with laughter. After singing to her, he gave her a kiss on the cheek which drew an, “Aww,” from the audience.
There were probably two or three girls for every boy which actually surprised me. I thought there would be way less guys at the show. That didn’t stop the girls from creating an ear shattering wail when they were begging for an encore. My ears received more damage in those three minutes between the original set and the encore than they have from all the concerts I’ve ever been to. Considering how often I’ve been standing in front of the speakers at those concerts, that is an impressive feet. I actually had to cover my ears it was so intolerable.
Of course, the band came back out. What I found unusual was that they only performed one song. Granted it was a long and impressive song. The outro sequence was intense and left a great last impression on me.
For a guy looking for rocking songs I’d have to recommend another band, as a general statement. My recommendation would be to download select songs (particularly not the Alisha Keys cover.) The live versions of the song have more solos and are all around more focused on the rock aspect of music where the album version’s will focus more on the romantic hip-hop aspect.