Red Hot Chili Peppers Soar at Canadian Tire Center
Photos by Renee Doiron
Shocking the crowd with an intense bass intro and shredding guitar, the Red Hot Chili Peppers opened the set on the red hot flames of a groove all before Anthony Kiedis even took the stage. Showing off the wavy, designable hanging lights that were an act of their own, "Around The World" was already a visual spectacle without Flea moving from end to end of the stage, a feat he kept up all night long.
"Snow (Hey Oh)" had the light rig flowing like a sea of stars as the crowd chanted its many hey oh's. Acting like no time has passed, Flea proceeded to jump three feet for every crash note of the bridge in classic Flea fashion, continuing his popping and stomping through "Otherside."
"Dark Necessities" found Kiedis sliding around the stage during Flea's many kick jumps before an eccentric groove outro on guitar and bass, closed out the track with a boom.They went into a quirky funk on "Mommy, Where's Daddy" with Kiedis as daddy and Flea playing side characters on high and low vocals for a unnerving track to see live.
"Look Around" brought heavy dynamic strength as it veered between an onslaught of rhythm to a frantic finale, all elevated by the almost mantra like screams of its chorus. Bringing surprises, "Go Robot" brought on a second bass player, who not only kept up with Flea on bass, but matched his side-step choreography with grace. Even better was the guitar work from Josh Klinghoffer, as he gave the hardest guitar wails of the night while taking the explorative qualities of his tone far too.
A bass and guitar jam lead right into an ecstatic rendition of "Californication" well worthy of the crowd screaming throughout, as the riff flowed out as classic-sounding as ever. Through a lightning fast solo interlude and some more recent material featuring 70s guitar and piano, and a devastating tribal-sounding drum outro they moved into the home stretch of the set, as the lighting crew also outdid themselves on fancy visuals/
"Suck My Kiss" brought the rhythm alive as Chad Smith delivered the drum performance of the night with aggressive focus even two hours into the set, making each accented hit pop. After a lighter and phone waving moment through "I Could Have Lied" they ended the set on "By The Way" as the song's electric mix of smooth chants and high octane freak outs closed the set on jarring terms.
Returning for their encore as only the Chili Peppers would, even at 50, Smith started a mini drum solo as Flea quickly took to the stage, crossing all the way to his mic stand on the other end by doing a walking handstand. Burning down the house once more, they carried the crowd through the righteous build-ups of "Goodbye Angels" before ending it all on the huge psychedelic bridge jams and sultry outro of "Give It Away" as the whole band was jumping around the stage right until they stopped playing.
Delivering a sonically exhilarating set to start the night off, Jack Irons prog rock soared through the arena, as the psychedelic visuals above him took it all the higher. Going for a thumping drum finale, the set kept delivering to the last beat. Considering the overall different sound he delivered it could be easy to forget Irons was a founding member of RHCP if he wasn't so great.
Handling the middle slot for the night, Deerhoof were clearly trying to get the crowd pumped with all their jumping around. With their unbelievable drummer it was easy to overlook the sometimes abrasive tones of the music that either hooked you or didn't. Not quite filling the room with their sound, they kept the momentum going as they thrashed around the stage.
Around The World
Snow (Hey Oh)
Mommy, Where's Daddy
She's Only 18
Dreams of a Samurai
Suck My Kiss
I Could Have Lied
By The Way
Give It Away