Pink Goes Stunt-Crazy in San Jose, 2/18/13

Categories: Last Night
Pink_HP_1.jpg
Sugarwolf
Pink in San Jose. All photos by Sugarwolf.
Pink
Monday, Feb. 18, 2013
HP Pavilion, San Jose

Better than:
Every other show on earth that doesn't involve dropping the star 50 feet from the ceiling.

Before we saw tonight's show, we thought Pink was kind of a badass. After tonight's show, not only are we positive that she's a total badass, we're pretty sure she's also part mutant (in that good, X-Men sort of way). Pink is one of the most fearless performers we've ever witnessed -- not just in terms of her trapeze artistry (which is jaw-dropping tonight), but also in her level of onstage honesty. She's the type of star who puts on a flawlessly produced show, but isn't afraid to stop it to sign someone's arm, or tell an arena full of people that she just did a front flip too fast and "puked a little." It's a truly delightful combination.

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Sugarwolf
It's only a few dates into the super-elaborate "The Truth About Love" tour, but within the first 20 minutes of this thing, all we can think about is how freaking long it must have taken to put together. The stage setup is a fantastical, Moulin Rouge-esque beast of a thing, with multiple projection screens (including an amazing gigantic heart), an elevator, fireworks and flames, a couple of staircases, and about seven different trapeze systems. It also includes, as we discover during final song, "Glitter in the Air" -- where Pink perfectly re-creates her now-legendary Grammy performance -- a huge vat of water to dunk her in.

Tonight is so perfectly paced that we have zero complaints about the setlist at all, order-of-content-wise (the absence of "Get the Party Started" is a little odd, sure, but the omission was smart given how over-played that track is). Tonight Pink does pop perfectly -- she and her gang of lady dancers are clearly having a blast during "Walk This Way," "Leave Me Alone (I'm Lonely)," and "Slut Like You." And the entire show's cast gets so raucous for pre-encore-closer, "Blow Me (One Last Kiss)," it prompts an infectious, arena-wide smile.

R&B has a moment with a quick medley of tracks from 2000's Can't Take Me Home album, but the rock 'n' roll rears its head, too. "Trouble," "How Come You're Not Here" and "Are We All We Are" are straightforward moments where Pink just rocks out with her band, gimmick-free (unless you think massive Slash-like guitar solos are gimmicky). There's a stripped-down portion, too, which, in its simplicity, actually offers some of the best moments of the night, musically speaking. The soulful, piano-based "Family Portrait" is a tear-jerker, and "Who Knew" is better when done with a single acoustic guitar.

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Sugarwolf
Our favorite moments of all though, do involve feats of physical insanity. Pink and everyone on her crew is ripped. The reason for this, is that if they weren't all pumped up to physical perfection, someone would probably die. No joke. This show is like one long crazy game of trust -- only instead of merely falling backwards and hoping someone catches her, Pink hangs 30 feet in the air, harness-free, with absolute faith that the dude hanging upside down who has hold of her wrists isn't going to get all sweaty and drop her by accident. And she does this stuff repeatedly -- most notably in, on, and around a wire cage 40 feet in the air, with five other apparently un-harnessed dancers.

Some stunts are safer than others. Pink opens the show with "Raise Your Glass," attached to bungee chords that repeatedly bounce her up and down between stage floor and ceiling. She does crazy rope acrobatics during "Try" that eventually turn into what can only be described as sultry dance-fighting with a male dancer (at one point he throws her around by her neck).

It's during the encore though, that Pink's physical prowess really blows your mind. She performs "So What" strapped into a circular waist harness that enables her to fly all over the arena, just 3 feet over the heads of the audience, upside down, sideways, and wherever else she feels like twisting and turning. During it all, Pink never misses a note, and it's a spectacle so joyous, most people here are either gasping with delight or giggling.

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Sugarwolf
In short, there is something for everyone tonight, and even if you hate Pink's music, there's no denying the sheer entertainment factor of this elaborate circus. The show probably isn't as PG-13 as some parents in the audience were hoping (there is cursing, pole-dancing and an entire portion dedicated to fetishes), but this is Pink -- and if we learned anything tonight, it's that she's a woman entirely unwilling to play it safe. Thank God for that.

Setlist
Raise Your Glass
Just Like a Pill
You And Your Hand
Leave Me Alone (I'm Lonely)
Try
Wicked Game
Just Give Me a Reason
Trouble
Are We All We Are
How Come You're Not Here?
Sober
Family Portrait
Who Knew
Perfect
Most Girls
There You Go
You Make Me Sick
Slut Like You
Blow Me (One Last Kiss)
So What
Glitter in the Air

-- @Raemondjjjj

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