Brandon Flowers 3/24/15

(a) setlist

    1. The Way It’s Always Been (acoustic)
    2. Dreams Come True
    3. Crossfire
    4. Magdalena
    5. Hard Enough
    6. Jilted Lovers & Broken Hearts
    7. Jenny Was a Friend of Mine (The Killers cover)
    8. Read My Mind (The Killers cover)
    9. Human (The Killers cover)
    10. Simply Irresistible (Robert Palmer cover)
    11. Swallow It
    12. Diggin’ Up The Heart
    13. Can’t Deny My Love

Encore:

  1. Right Behind You
  2. Only The Young
  3. Mr. Brightside (Jacques Lu Cont Remix)

(b) highlights

  • Brandon coming out before the “actual” start of the show to play “The Way It’s Always Been” for the fans that spent the whole day in the cold 🙂
  • getting to watch the whole crowd from the balcony – I rarely see shows from anywhere but the pit, so it was nice to look down on everyone and see the energy throughout
  • taking nice pictures for once; I took my old Canon Rebel XS to snatch good shots for friends
  • seeing Brandon’s solo material for the first time right alongside classic Killers’ material
  • “Jenny Was a Friend of Mine” really changes when Brandon sings it alone – it nearly transforms into an acoustic love ballad…which is crazy considering the song’s content

(c) lowlights

  • goofy ass “Swallow It”
  • never getting to hear my favorite track off Flamingo, “Playing With Fire”
  • 90% of the backup band

(d) overall thoughts

Due to God, fate, and the worst food poisoning of all time, I managed to miss every live Brandon Flowers show during the tour for his 2010 debut album Flamingo, so I was elated that he was coming back around my town for his 2015 album The Desired Effect. At the time of this show, we still hadn’t heard most of the album and didn’t know what to expect, so it was a pleasant surprise to hear a mix of his older material, a few new ones, and several Killers’ gems that had mostly been reworked for the new context.

I chose to watch the show from the Webster Hall balcony to avoid the crowd and have my own little concert upstairs. My friends stayed down in the pit and it was a cool way to watch Brandon literally in a new light. It felt a bit like watching the concert from the outside looking in – a unique experience for someone who’s definitely a die-hard fan when it comes to that music. The most memorable moment for me happened before the show even began; Brandon walked onstage with just one backing band member and performed an acoustic rendition of “The Way It’s Always Been” as a thank-you to fans for waiting outside all day in the frigid New York March weather. I’ve never seen him make such a gesture like this towards fans, and it felt very special. The rest of the night, Brandon was quite comfortable onstage and the crowd was so high energy, especially during The Killers’ songs, that I couldn’t help but feel a warm glow inside.

Bottom line: If seeing The Killers is a bit like eating a bombass sundae with chocolate fudge, whipped cream, and nuts on top, then seeing Brandon Flowers without The Killers is like eating a single scoop of vanilla ice cream: not as great as a sundae, but still something I’ll never turn down.

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