Orlando Hosts Rousing Conclusion to The American Candy Tour
Florida often serves as the first stop on American tours for a plethora of artists. It’s rare that we have the opportunity to see a well honed, energetic conclusion to a tour, but as we saw last night at The Beacham, they can be nights to remember. The Maine threw a little party to honor the occasion with 1,000 or so of their closest Orlando friends.
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The Phoenix-based band wrapped up their Spring American Candy tour with an entertaining night full of surprises as they played to a packed house at The Beacham. On this night, the three opening bands, The Technicolors, Knuckle Puck and Real Friends were headed home, while the main act headed West to squeeze in a few last shows as they worked their way home to Arizona. But, first one more night of fun for the four acts who truly seemed to be real friends…
The Technicolors kicked off the night with an insanely early 5:40 start time. As a testament to the Orlando fans, the place was already packed as they took the stage. The band drips with potential, and they delivered a nice blend of pop rock and a polished stage show. As a sign of things to come, Kennedy Brock from The Maine came out and jammed with them for a song.
Chicago’s Knuckle Puck took the stage next and shook things up a bit with a powerful punk-infused set. They quickly had a mosh pit swirling and definitely brought a harder edge to the show. Dan Lambton, frontman for Real Friends, came out and sang a song with the quintet. Their own lead vocalist Joe Taylor flew around the stage and was an entertaining showman.
Real Friends, the third of the opening acts is another Chicago band with melancholy punk tendencies. They settled into a nice groove with a blend of music that was more pop than punk, and the perfect warm up for the headliners. Lambton, decked out in a “Fry Your Brain On The Maine” T-shirt asked the light technician if he could turn on the mirror balls for a ballad. When he complied, every member of all four bands snuck on stage and slow danced together, kicking the party into another gear. Fun stuff.
After a short break, The Maine took the stage to a fervid crowd and immediately jumped into rocking versions of “Miles Away,” “Run” and “Growing Up.” They churned through the three songs as the crowd sang along throughout, before frontman John O’Callaghan chatted with his guests for the first time. He grabbed the mic “Hi, how do you all feel about yourselves?” It started a theme that continued throughout the show, as he frequently checked to make sure everyone was in a good place, and it was clear from the crowd reactions that they were bought in.
O’Callaghan seemed to be a more chipper version of himself during the show; at one time offering “I used to be an Emo kid, but I’m not anymore, and I have never been so happy… If you want sadness, listen to Morrissey. There’s enough sadness in The Smiths songs for every fucking person on the whole planet.” And the party was in full swing. The Maine-iacs who filled the venue seem to feel like they’re part of a strong caring family, and in a way they were, with O’Callaghan the caring patriarch.
(Read our recent interview with O’Callaghan HERE)
The band delivered a fantastic version of “Same Suit, Different Tie,” that was the highlight of the night for me, and for many pleased fans in attendance. The band also dished out a rollicking cover of The Rolling Stones classic “Satisfaction.”
As the show neared its conclusion, O’Callaghan grabbed an acoustic guitar and shared “I had a vodka and orange juice before I played, but I’m not really drunk,” and then led a nice crowd singalong to “Into Your Arms.” He stumbled through the lyrics and quipped “Maybe I had two vodkas and orange juices, oopsies!” Classic stuff!
His longtime musical mate Jared Monaco took over lead vocals for a quick song, and then the stage got quite crowded as all of the band members from across the line-up wrapped the show up in raucous fashion. O’callaghan closed with a classic quote: “Thanks for allowing us to play music, it’s the best fucking job in the world.” Perfectly summed up by a singer and band who seem refreshed and recharged and on top of their craft.
We will have a slew of photos on our Facebook Page in the next 24 hours. Like our Facebook page for future updates, rock news and the photos from this show. Thanks and please spread the word to other intelligent, creative, beautiful music fans like you 🙂