Smashing Pumpkins; A Smashing Success!

Super Smashing Bros.

Smashing Pumpkins made their return to Salt Lake Tuesday night in all their glory. Its almost Halloween, so who wouldn’t want more pumpkins in their life right now? With electrifying sounds that stunned the crowd, this concert was nothing short of phenomenal. It isn’t a surprise that when the Smashing Pumpkins announced an original line up tour, tickets would sell out and, sell fast. It’s been almost 20 years since the Pumpkins reunited with a tour. Through break ups and rough patches, dedicated fans lined the arena with a sense of excitement like children on Christmas morning.

Crowd in an Uproar

As I watched the people take their seats, I noticed an enormous age range, from teens to long-time parents. The large scope of devotees created a rare occurrence that not many bands are able to achieve. Different decades of people filled the arena from die hard fans donning original black “ZERO” tee shirts to today’s rock and roll youth. Either way the audience thrived at the spectacle.

The concert opened with a short video promoting important icons throughout the bands career, album art from Siamese Dream and Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness plastered the screen. 

When a bright light peered through a curtain of smoke to reveal one bald head and a shiny guitar, screams erupted that shattered the calm and destroyed the silence. This was it! Beginning the show was Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness  (the song). Behind lead singer Billy Corgan, was a film reel of photos that defined his past and illuminated his childhood.

 Dances of the Audience

Older fans waved drinks of beer and cocktails as their hips swayed to the sounds of mellow beats. It was songs like “1979” and Landslide that inspired people to wave phone lights like lighters- reliving the good old days in 21st century fashion. While songs like Cherub Rock and Mayonnaise  thrilled the audience. In addition, the stage provided energetic strobe lights of red and green with immaculate guitar solos that lasted for days! The stage choreography was like something out of a dream, wrapped up succinctly in the overall performance. This was a band at the top of their game. 

All the songs were praised by the audience in a storm of hand claps and foot stomps. Echos of lyrics paraded through the arena. Concert goers filled open spaces with dancing of 90’s angst and countless head bangs while rock horns saturated the crowd. The concert adrenaline voiced a roaring cacophony that transcended the stadium walls.

Return of the Pumpkins

The three hour concert consisted of twenty eight original songs with classic Pumpkin covers in between. With the founding members Billy Corgan, James Iha, and Jimmy Chamberlin united once again, the Smashing Pumpkin’s sound was on par with the original recordings. The band’s return to Salt Lake City gave a concert that united generations of grunge and a true alternative rock vibe to modern day fanatics. Indulging in a 90’s daydream, this performance will give Pumpkin lovers a night to remember.

 

The Magic of Music: KONGOS

Check out this alternative rock band making its way through the charts!

KONGOS is a South African-born Greek-American alternative rock band consisting of four brothers: Johnny, Jesse, Daniel, and Dylan Kongos. Based out of Phoenix, AZ, the band specialize in driving, arena-ready alt rock in the vein of Muse and Kings of Leon that’s infused with the polyrhythmic cadences of the South African upbringing. They released their debut album in 2007, followed by the platinum-selling Lunatic in 2012, which spawned the hit singles I”m Only Joking” and “Come With Me Now”.

I had an amazing opportunity to interview the band at this year’s Bonanza Campout and you can check it out all down here!

K-UTE: What inspired you all to be an alternative-rock band instead of any other genre?

KONGOS: Someone told us that we should do it! We were trying all sorts of different things (hip-hop/rap, metal, etc.) and it wasn’t working out and then one of our music instructors back at Arizona State University told us that we should try out this alternative genre. We gave it a shot and it started to click!

K-UTE: How long ago after did you guys get big after taking the instructor’s advice?

KONGOS: When we started to add the dance element, it started to take off, especially during performances! The audiences were very receptive towards that.

K-UTE: Out of all of the shows you have all performed, which one was your favorite?

KONGOS: We were doing this show in Copenhagen and it was at this tiny club where 40 people showed up and the couches and floors were dirty. There was this energy from the anarchists in the crowd that was the most interested than any other crowd that we performed for. We don’t know whether it was from their political beliefs or whatever but for some reason, it just clicked!

K-UTE: Out of all the songs Y’all have written, what songs are your favorites?

KONGOS: One song that is our favorite is “I Want to Know” because it’s a nice one to perform! Another one we like to perform live is “Birds Do It” because it’s fun.

K-UTE: If you were to give aspiring musicians and bands one piece of advice, what would you say to them?

KONGOS: Roll your stage cables up quickly! Also, learn how to get on and off stage quickly and really listen to everyone’s opinions because often you are wrong about what you think and how you think your music should be. If you listen to other people, sometimes they give you a little bit of insight!

Check out KONGOS on their Facebook page for any announcements and information! You can also check them out on their Spotify.