I can’t believe I made it this far in life without ever seeing the Red Hot Chili Peppers. But I’m so glad I was able to drive in a snow storm from Syracuse to the Key Bank Center in Buffalo on February 10 to make this at the last possible minute. I just feel bad for missing the openers. Going into this concert my first thought was “what on earth is this band going to be like without John Frusciante?!” And honestly this band still holds its own as the kings of funk rock. Guitarist Josh Klinghoffer is damn amazing at what he does, plays the parts justified, the solos slightly different, but nails the backing vocals.
Overall, the band is as vital as it ever was, and show no signs of slowing down. But their stage production was massive and unique. Above the crowd and stage was the new kinetic light sculpture, designed by the production company called TAIT Towers. This technique and stage design has never been done before at other shows. The band made an ambitious move to excite the crowd and add to their already insane musical experience. It is really hard to explain how these lights work but check out this link to see a better explanation.
The band opened with a cool little jam before frontman Anthony Kiedis stormed the stage before going into “Can’t Stop” and “Dani California.” I also want to point out that Flea is still one of the most bad ass bassists ever to grace music and Chad Smith can pound the drums meaner than Animal the Muppet. Eat your heart out Will Farrell. Also in addition to all the crazy production, the band had additional musicians when they performed songs off their latest album The Getaway. They had an additional guitarist, keyboardist, and percussionist to make the songs more massive. It was also cool to see the band do jams, bass interludes, and guitar solos in between songs, as well as showing off their sense of humor.
One of the highlights of the night was “Aeroplane” which was off their 1995 album One Hot Minute which featured Dave Navarro on guitar at the time….which was why it was such an unexpected treat to hear. And my life was complete towards the end of the show when they played the iconic “Under The Bridge.” Found it interesting when the band did a cover of Iggy and The Stooges’ “Search and Destroy” in which Kiedis took his shirt off. Not sure if that was supposed to be a nod to Iggy himself. The band closed off their set with “By The Way” before a kick ass two song encore of “Good Bye Angels” off The Getaway and the oh-so-fun and dirty song “Give It Away” which the crowd went bananas over.
Overall it was an unforgettable night, I would expect RHCP will be back in NY very soon and will still sell out a massive arena…and it would be great to see what kind of ambitious production they would carry next. Not to mention with so many albums out, there’s so many songs that still need to be incorporated into their set.