Detroit Rock City … more like Daughtry Rock City
Daughtry’s Leave This Town tour came tearing through Detroit on Saturday night at a near capacity Joe Louis Arena. Continuing to ride on the success of their 2008 platinum album “Leave this Town,” Daughtry joined by special guests Lifehouse & Cavo, made Detroit Rock City … Daughtry Rock City.
The evening kicked off with St. Louis Rockers, Cavo, performing a number of tracks off their debut major label release, “Bright Nights Dark Days.” Their songs translated flawlessly from the album to the stage with solid vocals and great rhythms. This is Cavo’s second trek across the country with Daughtry and after seeing them this past October; I was impressed to see the band continuing to grow. Lead singer, Casey Walker, has an extraordinary way of delivering vocals with such conviction that come across as passionate and believable. This was most evident on their current single, “Let it Go,” which is currently climbing the mainstream charts. Closing their set with their number one rock single “Champagne,” Cavo left the arena filled with tons of energy setting the tone for the rest of the evening. The set did seemed unusually short and left me (and those around me) wanting more of their catching melodies. The band managed to hold their own, remaining memorable even among the powerhouse rock acts of Lifehouse and Daughtry. If Cavo is the future of Rock Music, we have a lot to look forward to. (Don’t forget to read our interview with Cavo from Saturday HERE)
Warming up the crowd for Daughtry was the veteran band of the evening, Lifehouse. They started the set with “All In” which ironically enough was the one song, I immediately envisioned live when I reviewed the album last month. “All In” was as fantastic live as it is on the album and has all the makings of a future huge hit for the band. Performing a number of songs off the new album during the forty five minute set, including the title track “Smoke & Mirrors” and their most recent hit “Halfway Gone,” Lifehouse showcased the depth of their latest album. “Wrecking Ball,” which found bassist Bryce Soderberg on lead vocals, showcased a different side of the band, which was refreshing. During the dark and moody “Nerve Damage” lead singer Jason Wade, lightened the moment by emerging out into the crowd, scaling his way into the back sections of the lower level much to the approval of those in attendance. Lifehouse closed the set with their first hit “Hanging by a Moment.” Even after ten years, this song is as great as it was when it was first released.
If I were to have one disappointment about Lifehouse Saturday night, it would be my favorite song from the new album, “Had Enough” not finding its way on the set list. I was holding out for the Chris Daughtry/Jason Wade moment … Maybe next time … Minneapolis? Overall, it was a solid showing by Lifehouse and I look forward to their upcoming shows, with and without Daughtry.
After seeing Daughtry several times over the past 3 years, I have had the opportunity to see the band grow from playing the smallest of clubs post-idol to selling out arenas. No matter how many times I see Daughtry, they always give 100% and Saturday night was no exception. Although not every note is pitch perfect, the musicianship is superb, the lyrics pure genius, and Chris’s stage presence is second to none.
Kicking off the set with the theme music from Batman, the band exploded into their first song “Every Time You Turn Around” and continued to keep the energy up as they worked through all the fan favorites and hits from their debut multi-platinum release as well as their most current effort “Leave this Town.” It becomes evident very quickly how successful this band has been in a short amount of time. With a number of recognizable radio hits being performed throughout the evening, even those who may not consider themselves to be huge fans found themselves singing along for several songs throughout the show. Daughtry does tend to be given a hard time because of their radio friendly sound but they can rock just as hard as many of the heavier bands out there. This was most evident during “You Don’t Belong” and their closing song “There and Back.”
It’s unbelievable that a band brought together by a series of additions following Chris’s American Idol run could be so cohesive and in tune with one another. The band; Joey Barnes on drums, Brian Craddock & Josh Steely on guitar and Josh “JP” Paul on bass compliment perfectly the intense vocals of the bands namesake. In what should still be considered a “young” band is a group of artists showing growth and maturity far beyond the bands years together.
Daughtry is best showcased when the lights dim and the music slows on ballads like “September” and “Learn my Lesson” where their biggest asset, songwriting, is placed front and center. Chris has the gift of expressing life through music in a way that is relatable to just about anyone. This alone will keep this band selling out shows and producing platinum albums for many years to come.
Other highlights included a pair of covers; a beautiful acoustic version of Phil Collins “In the Air” which rivals the original version and a rousing rendition of Billy Idol’s “Rebel Yell.” I did manage to get my Jason Wade/Chris Daughtry moment when the Lifehouse front man joined Daughtry for “Home,” the song Chris said he can “thank for getting him his record deal.”
Daughtry has chosen to keep ticket prices affordable ($29.95 – 35.95) which is truly worth the price of admission for just one of the bands not to mention all three. This is a must see tour, a perfect trio of mainstream rock music at its very best. Cavo, Lifehouse, and Daughtry are on tour through mid June; check out the tour dates below.
April 18 Champaign, Il University of Illinois
April 20 Broomfield, CO Odeum Colorado
April 22 West Valley City, UT The E Center
April 23 Nampa, ID Idaho Center
April 24 Reno, NV Reno Events Center
April 26 Fresno, CA Save Mart Center
April 28 Glendale, AZ Jobing.com Arena
April 29 Las Vegas, NV Orleans Arena
May 1 San Diego, CA San Diego Sports Arena
May 3 Los Angeles, CA Nokia Theatre L.A. Live
May 4 Bakersfield, CA Rabobank Arena
May 6 San Jose, CA HP Pavilion at San Jose
May 7 Sacramento, CA ARCO Arena
May 9 Seattle, WA WaMu Theater
May 10 Yakima, WA Yakima Valley Sun Dome
May 13 Edmonton, AB Rexall Place
May 14 Saskatoon, SK Credit Union Centre
May 15 Regina, SK Brandt Center
May 17 Winnipeg, MB MTS Centre
May 19 Minneapolis, MN Target Center
May 21 Green Bay, WI Resch Center
May 22 Rockford, IL Rockford MetroCentre
May 24 Wichita, KS INTRUST Bank Arena
May 25 Kansas City, MO Sprint Center
May 27 Hoffman Estates, IL Sears Centre Arena
May 28 Grand Rapids, MI Van Andel Arena
May 30 Nashville, TN Nashville Arena
June 2 Pittsburgh, PA Petersen Events Center
June 3 Pikeville, KY Eastern Kentucky Expo Center
June 5 Duluth, GA The Arena at Gwinnett Center
June 6 N. Charleston, SC North Charleston Coliseum
June 8 Clemson, SC Littlejohn Coliseum
June 9 Augusta, GA James Brown Arena
June 11 Charlotte, NC Time Warner Cable Arena
June 12 Hampton, VA Hampton Coliseum
June 14 Amherst, MA Mullins Center
June 15 Manchester, NH Verizon Wireless Arena
June 17 Portland, ME Cumberland County Civic Center
June 19 Rochester, NY Blue Cross Arena