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Gig ReviewsReviews

[Review] P!nk @ Marvel Stadium, Melbourne 23/02/2024

Melbourne is experiencing an exciting few months filled with major music events. Last week, the city hosted performances by Blink 182, Taylor Swift, and Matchbox Twenty, and this week the momentum continues with Slash featuring Myles Kennedy, and the much-loved Suzi Quatro gearing up for the Red Hot Summer Tour in March.

The start of a P!nk concert feels like the rush of zooming down a roller coaster’s steep drop. It’s a thrilling and wild journey, where you find yourself catching your breath in anticipation..

In other words: Just. Hang. On.

On her Summer Carnival stadium tour’s Friday night show, P!nk delivered a mesmerizing performance amidst a backdrop of colorful neon flamingos, oversized mirror balls, and whimsical flying bananas, all complemented by her signature, breathtaking circus-inspired acts. Now at 44, P!nk has mentioned in recent interviews, feeling at the pinnacle of her fitness, which was evident in her dynamic bungee cord stunts during the vibrant kickoff with Get the Party Started, intertwined with a hint of the Eurythmics’ Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This), and the lively Raise Your Glass, highlighting her incredible energy and agility.

P!nk’s ability to deliver both vocally and visually, even while performing complex aerial maneuvers, surpasses that of many artists who perform with both feet on the ground. My plus one, who has a lifetime background in theater and was experiencing a P!nk concert for the first time, was completely amazed. It was quite a sight to see her experience her first P!nk concert; it reminded me of the excitement of discovering something wonderful for the first time. The way P!nk manages her vocals while engaging in spins and flips was truly remarkable. 

P!nk took a moment to reminisce about her initial performance at Marvel Stadium, known back then as Telstra Dome, in 2002 during the Rumba festival, where she shared the stage with Bon Jovi, Shaggy, and Australian acts Natalie Imbruglia and Bachelor Girl. There seemed to be a few loyalists in the crowd who were there as-well! Even when simply standing at the microphone for Who Knew, dressed in a glittering, silver outfit with matching ankle boots, P!nk’s performance was as powerful and confident as ever, her voice as strong as her physical presence. It was about here she spied a gift held aloft by a fan who clearly knew her weakness. TIM TAMS !!! But wait…. “Are these new” Alecia exclaimed?! “They are blue?!….. DOUBLE COATED!!!! Can they still be used to drink coffee through?” The crowd answered as only a 40thousand crowd can, much to Alecia’s delight. 

Armed with a strong selection of tracks from her latest album Trustfall, P!nk faced the challenging task of integrating new songs with classics from her 23-year repertoire. The setlist she crafted managed to encompass the breadth of her career, featuring anthems like Try, with its powerful chorus ideal for stadium singalongs, the emotive and dance-heavy What About Us, and the uplifting F*!king Perfect. A standout moment was Just Like Fire, which was seamlessly blended with Benatar’s Heartbreaker, creating an energetic fusion highlighted by Justin Derrico’s electrifying guitar performance. 

In a captivating moment, the youngest dancer of the troupe, Madelyne Spang, took center stage with a beautifully haunting dance during the spoken introduction of Turbulence. P!nk then emerged, offering words of encouragement to Madelyne, reminding her to breathe. Following this tender exchange, P!nk joined veteran dancer Khasan Brailsford at the top of the catwalk for an impressive solo aerial performance, which then evolved into a thrilling aerial duet.

P!nk also found room in her set for a few cover songs, delivering a unique take on Bob Dylan’s Make You Feel My Love, inspired by Adele’s version, performed on the piano. Later on, she included a rendition of the 4 Non Blondes hit What’s Up? adding her own flair to these classic tracks.

In a quieter segment of the concert, P!nk shared the stage with her 12-year-old daughter, Willow, for a touching performance of Cover Me in Sunshine, a track they released together in 2021. Following this, P!nk took a moment to sit at the edge of the catwalk alongside guitarist Justin Derrico for a series of more intimate performances. The acoustic rendition of Don’t Let Me Get Me particularly resonated with me, stirring emotions deep within my 50-year-old heart. The albums M!ssundaztood from 2001 and Can’t Take Me Home from 2000 remain my cherished favorites. P!nk’s talent for conveying deep emotion through her music was profoundly evident in the poignant ballad When I Get There, a heartfelt tribute to her late father. 

However, it wasn’t long before the energy shifted back to vibrant pop rhythms with I Am Here. P!nk chose to perform this piece barefoot, declaring it the only way to truly connect with the song. She likened the experience to being a dolphin, suggesting the importance of letting worries slide off effortlessly, just as water does off a dolphin’s back. Of course, P!nk couldn’t stay away from the adrenalized pull of something acrobatic. She joined some of her dancers for a unified routine during Trustfall while other members of her pack blissfully flipped on a trampoline behind her. P!nk joined them at the top of the setup, watching their “trust falls” onto the coiled canvas. P!nk’s remarkable qualities, such as her endurance, authenticity, and rich, powerful voice, are all worthy of praise. However, the greatest gift she offers during her concerts is the freedom to truly enjoy oneself.

In a dazzling display during her So What performance, the singer, covered in a shimmering outfit, took the concert experience to new heights—quite literally. She was secured in a harness connected to wires, which allowed her to execute a series of spectacular aerial flips across the expanse of the stadium. Hovering above the awe-struck crowd of almost 40,000+ fans, she belted out the defiant lyrics, “So what, I’m still a rock star,” with unmatched energy and charisma. This moment wasn’t just a highlight of the show; it was a vivid declaration of her unstoppable spirit and undeniable status as a rock star. Her ability to blend vocal prowess with daring acrobatics in front of a massive audience not only captivated everyone present but also solidified her reputation as an exceptional performer, truly living up to the title of a rock star in every sense.

P!nk plays again tonight in Melbourne with tickets still available at https://www.livenation.com.au/artist-p-nk-348049

Before setting off to Adelaide, and Perth before heading back for encore shows at Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane. And finishing off this incredible tour in Townsville on 22nd and 23rd March. 

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Album ReviewReviews

P!nk – Trustfall

The musical landscape has been graced with many pop artists over the years, but few have the endurance and staying power of Alecia Beth Moore, more commonly known as P!nk. The powerhouse vocalist has proven time and time again that she can spend years on the road between albums and still manage to reinvent and reinsert herself into the musical conversation as though she never left. Just when you think she might not have more to say, she’ll quickly prove you wrong. TRUSTFALL, the singer’s ninth studio album, is a testament to this fact, and it showcases an artist who has matured while still having fun along the way.

TRUSTFALL is, in some ways, a tale of two varying paths. One path, is her ever-present pop road, which features the anthemic and uplifting songs that P!nk has become known for delivering album after album. The other path is a more folksy and ‘Americana’ a road in which P!nk has travelled more frequently in recent years. What is most impressive, however, is that she is able to navigate both worlds, finding success in each and presenting them in a way that feels interconnected.

The first track on the album, When I Get There, sets the tone for an emotional journey that explores themes of grief and love. P!nk, in a heartfelt tribute to her late father who passed away from prostate cancer in late 2021, pours her heart out in this sombre yet beautiful ballad. The piano-driven melody and P!nk’s vocals blend perfectly to create a sad yet uplifting tribute that lingers in the listener’s mind long after the track has ended.

The lyrics in the chorus are particularly touching as P!nk asks her father if there is a bar in heaven where he has a favorite chair, sitting with friends, and discussing the weather. The sentimentality of the words is apparent as P!nk longs for a sense of connection with her father, even in the afterlife.

Following the poignant opener, the album takes a sudden turn with the anthemic title track, Trustfall. The pace picks up, and the powerful energy is intense. Featuring a pulsing synth and heavy beat, this track is a stark contrast to the prior ballad. Nonetheless, it works well as it showcases the range of emotions that P!nk explores throughout the album, from grief to anger and everything in between. The contrast of these two tracks highlights the emotional waves of the album and sets the stage for a journey that promises to be both heart-wrenching and exhilarating.

A great example of this is the standout track, Turbulence.  It combines the elements of traditional rock and ambient pop, resulting in a strangely compelling sound encounter. P!nk’s passionate and inspirational vocals express a hint of sorrow in this mid-tempo ballad, as she emphasizes the idea that the difficulties of life are “just turbulence” and are only temporary.

Trustfall also features unique collaborations on the album, featuring three standout artists across different genres. One of these collaborations is with the beloved folk band, The Lumineers, on the soul-stirring track Long Way To Go. The slow and steady rhythm allows for the blending of Wesley Schultz and P!nk’s vocals which brings a depth of emotion that is sure to resonate with listeners.

The second notable collaboration on the album is with Swedish sisters First Aid Kit on the country-inspired track Kids In Love. Their harmonies are perfectly complemented by the acoustic guitar that underscores the song, giving it a rustic and nostalgic feel. The lyrics explore the longing for the simplicity and innocence of youth, and the haunting harmonies in which all three voices just melt together is truly moving.

The album’s final collaboration is with country superstar Chris Stapleton on the duet Just Say I’m Sorry. Despite its country roots, the track is surprisingly more of a ballad than a typical country song. P!nk and Stapleton’s vocals blend seamlessly, creating a sense of intimacy and raw emotion that is both powerful and heartbreaking.

In all three collaborations, P!nk shows her ability to work with different artists from various genres and create something truly unique and beautiful. Trustfall proves that she is not afraid to experiment with her sound and collaborate with others, resulting in an album that is diverse and captivating.

P!nk’s Never Gonna Not Dance Again is a shining example of her talent for crafting uplifting and anthemic pop music that motivates listeners to maintain a positive attitude in the face of difficult circumstances. The song’s lyrics, particularly the line One thing I’m never gonna do is throw away my dancing shoes, serve as a powerful call to action for any individual who may be struggling, inspiring them to keep dancing and persevering.

One of the highlights, and my personal favourite, of Trustfall is the catchy pop-punk tune Hate Me, which is a welcome surprise amidst the other tracks. With its snarling electric guitars and just-cheesy-enough lyrics, with its driving and defiant lyrics, it is infectious with a “shout-along-in-your-car” classic old school rock sound. Haters gonna hate!!!

Last Call, the acoustic-driven mid-tempo anthem, brings a refreshing shift by infusing a ’90s pop-rock vibe. The song continues the albums’ theme of positivity despite overwhelming challenges. P!nk’s lyrics, “Last call before the world ends/ Right before the avalanche/ Last call for us to make amends,” serve as a powerful reminder to seize the moment and reconcile before it’s too late. It’s as if this is the last chance to do so before everything comes crashing down.

Trustfall takes listeners on a fascinating exploration of love, grief, and personal growth. P!nk’s signature soulful vocals serving as the backbone of the album. As always, P!nk has expertly woven her personal experiences into the fabric of her music, resulting in a collection of tracks that are both relatable and inspiring.

One of the keys to P!nk’s longevity and success in the music industry is her ability to collaborate with some of the biggest names in music, giving her a versatile and contemporary sound that resonates with audiences across generations. This is evident in Trustfall, where P!nk effortlessly incorporates a range of genres and styles into her music, keeping her sound fresh and relevant.

It’s no surprise that P!nk has remained a fixture in the music industry for over two decades, thanks to her multiple hits and ever-evolving sound. With Trustfall, P!nk continues to prove that she is a force to be reckoned with, creating music that speaks to the heart of listeners everywhere

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