No Doubt, Paramore, & The Sounds at Nissan Pavilion 6/14/09
I was SO excited for this show. It’s been years since I’ve seen Paramore, and I had never seen No Doubt before. Sad, considering how much I love both these bands.
I got to the venue a little after 7 PM and got the nice surprise of seeing the end of The Sounds’ set – I had no idea they were playing this date. Unfortunately I only saw about a song and a half. Maja Ivarsson sounded a little screechy, but I have to commend her for being able to sprint around the stage in heels.
Paramore were their usual energetic selves, with Hayley Williams dashing around and the rest of the guys jumping and flipping all over the place. I felt that they left a few key songs out of their setlist, "Emergency" being the most notable one. They did play a couple of new songs off their upcoming record, and both were pretty fast, hard songs. Their setlist was:
For A Pessimist, I’m Pretty Optimistic
When It Rains
Where The Lines Overlap
That’s What You Get
Let The Flames Begin
I thought "Decode" was kind of a weak way to end the set, but probably a strategic choice due to the Twilight soundtrack. I was pleased with how long their set was – I was expecting much less.
No Doubt got on stage around 9:30 PM, and there was just so much excitement in the air. They began with their shadows projected on a white sheet, waving at the audience. It looked like absolutely everyone in the audience was taking photos of it. When the sheet dropped, they had an all white, futuristic looking setup with the band members on ramps and stands – it kind of looked like a spaceship. Even the stage floor had been covered in white material, and all of the band was dressed in black and white. There was also a big screen behind the band, showing shapes, colors, and videos in sync with the songs. Gwen Stefani sounded a little rocky for the first minute or so, but then she warmed up and sounded fantastic. She has such a powerful voice and knows how to project it.
As for their outfits, No Doubt was definitely harkening back to their early days. Stefani’s hair was tied up in knots, and she was wearing a cut off tank top and cargo-like pants. The rest of the band looked the ska/punk part too.
The set list went something like this:
Underneath It All
Excuse Me Mr.
End It On This
Guns of Navarone
It’s My Life
Just A Girl
Stand And Deliver
No Doubt is one of those bands where you think it just can’t get any better, but they keep pulling out one huge song after another. They played all their big hits, plus some older stuff – fan favorites and such. Their setup was so slick and well-produced, and the whole band seemed to be having a great time. Stefani was swaggering all over the stage, and everyone kept running up and down the ramps and jumping around.
What really struck me was how Stefani kept talking to the audience in the pit. Most bands will address the crowd generally, but Stefani kept expressing gratitude and talking to individuals who were near her. She took a few presents from the crowd, and asked people about their signs they were holding. One man had a sign asking for a hug, so she told him, "Well, come and get it." She hugged him up on stage, talked to him for a minute, and let him take a picture with her. It’s really great to see such a huge band be that kind and welcoming to their fans.
I was also blown away by the sheer number of people there. Nissan Pavilion holds up to 19,000 people. I don’t know if the show sold out, but it looked pretty close. It was just people dancing for as far as you could see.
Stefani had two costume changes – once into a sparkly silver and black minidress with black tights and boots, and the second time into a sparkly black polo shirt with bleached out jeans. The only other band member to change clothes with drummer Adrian Young, who put on a rainbow colored tutu near the end.
For "Stand And Deliver," a bunch of freestanding drums were brought on stage, and all the members of Paramore and The Sounds came out to play, with all three women singing the song. Stefani also dropped and did ten or fifteen pushups during the intro to "Just A Girl." There was a lot of call and response singing as well. If any of the band members are tired of playing these songs, you would never know it.
Overall, I was very happy with this show. It was so great to hear all those songs I love, and to see the band having a good time. It was also nice that I got to see the leg of the tour where all three bands were female-fronted – that is something that very rarely happens, especially at this level. I envy one girl in the crowd that Stefani talked to – the girl had seen 11 stops on this tour and was planning on seeing 10 more. I’d definitely love to be able to do that!