Written by BRETT BODNER / MANAGING EDITOR
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
PHOTOS COURTESY of Blaze NowaraOver 3,200 people packed the MAC to see the former “American Idol” star turned rocker, Chris Daughtry, made his way to campus last Friday as part of his self-titled band’s 2012 Break the Spell tour. There were 3,283 tickets sold for the event.
Mary Ann Nagy, Vice President of Students and Community Services, said “This was a great concert for us to get and a great evening for the University and our concert promoter partner. Everyone seemed to have a good time and we look forward to having bands like this in the future. It’s great to be able to bring in well-known artists.”
Daughtry played 19 songs that evening, which mostly consisted of his biggest hits and several of his new songs.
The band kicked off the show with one of their newest singles off Break the Spell titled “Renegade.” Sophomore student Nicolle Rodriguez felt this was a great way to start the show.
“One of my favorite parts was when he performed ‘Renegade’ and the curtain dropped revealing his band. The song got the whole crowd excited and pumped up for his show,” said Rodriguez.
The top part of Daughtry’s set was loaded with songs off Break the Spell as they played “Break the Spell,” “Crawling Back to You,” “Losing my Mind,” “Crazy,” and a song intended to get the crowd dancing, called “Outta my Head.”
In the middle of all those songs they played “Feels Like Tonight,” which was one of the biggest hits on their self-titled debut album Daughtry.
Following the new songs, the rest of the band left the stage for a little bit, leaving Daughtry alone to play some songs acoustically. He played “What About Now,” and “Home,” which he noted was the song that helped him get signed for his first record deal. The crowd was also treated to a new song called “4 am,” which he recorded a few weeks ago as part of Esquire magazine’s songwriting challenge.
After Daughtry was done with these acoustic songs, a white curtain fell on the back drop as the rest of the band came back on stage and a video of outer space began to play, seguing into “Spaceship.”
Now the crowd had been into the show the entire night, but there was a definitely a surge of energy when the band played two of their most popular break-up of their most popular break-up songs: “Over You” and “No Surprise.”
The crowd shouted the lyrics at the top of their lungs and loved every minute of these two numbers.
To close their regular set, the band played the biggest hit off their second album Leave This Town, “September.” Daughtry let the crowd know the song was about growing up in a small town and added that “You can’t let a small town hold you back, which is the idea that inspired Leave This Town.”
Not only did Daughtry play their hits, but he also threw in a few cover songs as well. Towards the end of their set they covered Tom Petty’s “Runnin’ Down a Dream” and Billy Idol’s “Rebel Yell.”
The show came to a close with “It’s Not Over,” the song that helped jump start Daughtry’s career. The crowd stood and cheered while the band took a bow.
Sophomore Samantha Silvent said “The concert was absolutely incredible, he was engaging and made everyone excited. The show was so much fun.”
Daughtry had excellent stage presence throughout the night and was very interactive with the crowd. There was even a point in the show where Daughtry stopped what he was doing to take a picture with Maria Hodgins, mother of Club and Greek Editor Nick Hodgins.
“I’ve liked him and his music since day one and I’ve seen him on every one of his tours and loved them all. He seemed like a really nice guy and he took the time to show the fans he cares about them and I’ll always remember the experience,” said Maria Hodgins.
Throughout Daughtry’s set, there was a number of things that stood out about the band. For starters, Daughtry’s voice sounded the exact same way it sounds on the album. This was something that did not go unnoticed by many of the concerts spectators.
“It was impressive that he sounds like he does on the radio. He tried making it different for the crowd yet still managed to put on a good show. He’s a great live performer,” said junior Andrew Rodriguez.
Not only was Daughtry impressive on vocals, but the rest of his band had an outstanding performance as well. Drummer Ryan Diaz, formerly of the band Trapt, put on an outstanding show. The drums thundered throughout the MAC for the entire night and he was on key with every beat. Touring band member Elvio Fernandez awed the audience with his multiple music talents. Throughout the concert he sang backup vocals and played the guitar and keyboards. Guitarists Josh Steely and Brian Craddock looked like they were having a lot of fun throughout the night and laid down some great solos.
Opening for Daughtry was acoustic guitar player Mike Sanchez (not New York Jet quarterback Mark Sanchez) and the band SafetySuit. I had never heard of Mike Sanchez before, but his performance wasn’t too bad. Besides having awkward stage posture, he got the crowd going early when he played covers like Kings of Leon’s “Use Somebody” and Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing,” although he teased the crowd by first singing their other song “Lights.”
SafetySuit also put on a strong performance. The band had great stage presence and got really into their music by dancing around on stage, which is something I admire about a band.
The only thing about the concert I was not a fan of was the fact that the floor was filled with seats. Usually at rock shows, the floor is opened up for standing room only general admission. I feel if this had been done, it would’ve felt more like a rock show.
The concert was very worthwhile and is surely amongst one of the best musical acts to roll through the MAC since it’s been open. In time we’ll find that this was no surprise.