Despite the ticket prices complaints, what many considered as an unfair system of obtaining a seat at the front section, the parking and remote location of the venue, last Monday Weezer, together with Saves the Day and Ozma, fulfilled almost every single element of a spectacular concert.
Mars Music Amphitheater in West Palm Beach had very few empty seats, with waves of bodies, mostly young teens, tightly close to each other blocking away part of the uncanny cold air. At 7:30 p.m. sharp, Ozma showed up on stage, while the members of Saves the Day pulled a prank on them by having the Village People’s Y.M.C.A served as background music to their arrival, instead of their usual song. The California quintet played a 30-minute set, that included mostly heavy guitars, songs with dual vocals and sudden changes in tempo. Although many of their songs sounded similar, Ozma managed to warm up the audience for the rest of the night.
Almost 20 minutes later, the lights dimmed and Saves the Day, with Chris Conley singing, Dave Soloway and Ted Alexander playing the guitars, Eben D’amico in the bass, and a replacement drummer, walked casually into the stage, while the audience cheered wildly. The New Jersey five piece proceeded to enthusiastically perform their set of songs, mostly from their last album Stay What You Are, with very little interruption between tracks.
Saves the Day played for more or less 45 intense minutes, and displayed their unique style of pop rock, punk- influenced music, loaded with guitar riffs and catchy melodies. Songs like At Your Funeral, which closed their set, their next single, Freakish, and Certain Tragedy pleased the crowd and satisfied the expectations.
What almost felt like midnight was actually 9:35 p.m. and the crowd of teens with rainbow colored heads and indie band T-shirts were on their feet awaiting the slightest strumming of a guitar signaling the presence of Weezer.
Seconds later lead guitarist, singer, songwriter and cult hero Rivers Cuomo, sporting a new full beard, and without his signature thick framed glasses, walked on stage, greeted the crowd with a hand wave, and grabbed his guitar. Rhythm guitarist and backup vocalist Brian Bell, drummer Pat Wilson, and new bassist Scott Schreiner, joined Cuomo in performing the opening song of their set Island in the Sun, from the Green Album.
Weezer carried on their show with their most known tracks from their Blue Album and Pinkerton, such as The Good Life, Undone, Why Bother? and Say it Ain’t So. Their play list was also loaded with new songs like Dope Nose and Keep Fishin from their soon to be released album Maladroid. Not knowing the words, the crowd didn’t sing along as they did with the rest of the songs, but nodded and clapped enthusiastically in approval. Still suffering from a flu that spread through many of the band and crew members, Cuomo tried to recover his full voice by not saying almost anything between songs, and only singing.
Definite highlights of the show were the lighting coordination and stage set. Even though at times the audience could barely see the members of Weezer through the thick smoke, the bright blue, pink and green lights behind Wilson’s drums and the white dazzling “W” under his drums, the large, flashing light that came down from the roof, the confetti thrown to the first rows raised the show’s level of energy and intensity.
The band left the stage after a powerful rendition of Only in Dreams, but came back for an encore and played Buddy Holly and Surf Wax America, during which the members of Saves the Day suddenly appeared dressed in wacky costumes, and jumped all over the stage.
Cuomo, Bell, and Schreiner ended the night by distorting their instruments and causing loud feedbacks that lasted for almost five minutes.
The concert didn’t present any apparent disappointments, except the frustrating disregard of El Scorcho, which left the audience whispering as they left the venue, but at the same time leaving in them an utter satisfaction of having witnessed an amazing display of great rock music.