The days of fluorescent lights, underground clubs, creaky new-wave keyboards and bouffant hairdos returned for a few short hours when the B-52's took over the Canyons stage Wednesday.
While this band reunion was a little more refreshing than other money-driven acts of desperation, there were times when it looked like the flamboyant foursome were just going through the motions.Still, vocalists Kate Pierson, Cindy Wilson and Fred Schneider and guitarist Keith Strickland played their band's flouncing hits.
"Planet Claire," "Strobelight," "Private Idaho" and "Channel Z" got the audience contorting in the aisles. The hyperactive rhetoric of "Party Out of Bounds" and the exotic pounce of "Mesopotamia" also allowed the audience to delve into cardiovascular exercises.
Other nostalgic runs included "Roam," "Good Stuff" and the payoff set ender, "Love Shack." The band - which also included a bassist, drummer and keyboardist - cranked out the beats.
New songs, which were laced by the notorious B-52 sound, included "Debbie" and "Hallucinating Pluto."
A bright-colored light show included a mirror ball (of course) and streams of lights that gave design, back lighting and other eye-bending effects that highlighted the music.
Schneider, in addition to his trademark barking, added to the sounds with his many props - a transistor radio, a child's piano and a flashing cellular phone.
Pierson's B-52 hairstyle didn't move at all as she bounced on stage. Wilson's flyaway perm, however, floated into her face as she pounded away at some bongos. Then there was Strickland. He seemed content strumming away wearing his cowboy hat.
The night ended with a roudy version of "Rock Lobster."
The Pretenders played its form of folky '80s rock. Leader Chrissie Hynde still had the sass and she's just as playful as ever.
With hits such as "Talk of the Town," "Back on the Chain Gang" and "Thin Line Between Love and Hate" the band - featuring drummer Martin Chambers and guitarist Adam Seymour - eventually got the audience on its feet.
Sure, the set started off a bit slow, but it wasn't any lack of energy from Hynde. She worked the audience until it burst into a frenzy with the last tune, "Brass in Pocket (I'm Special)."
Other Pretender tunes included "Precious," "Ohio," "Don't Get Me Wrong," "Middle of the Road" and "I'll Stand by You."
Dancehall/swing band the Royal Crown Revue grabbed the audience and got members involved at the beginning of the evening. The payoff came when the band ripped into the single "Zip Gun Bop (Reloaded)."