OREM A veteran band from Arizona combined with one of the music industry's hottest newcomers for a loud, energetic show at the McKay Events Center Monday night.
Maybe it was partly because of the energy from the large, noisy crowd, but Jimmy Eat World gave one of the best performances of their past few Utah stops.
Opening with "Big Casino" from their latest CD, "Chase This Light," Jim Adkins, Tom Linton, Rick Burch and Zach Lind came out of the starting gates strong. The audience continued dancing and sang the chorus to "Sweetness" before pogo-ing along to "A Praise Chorus."
The upbeat start continued with "Crush" before the the band slowed the tempo with the crowd-pleasing "Work."
"Always Be," another great new song off "Chase This Light," featured a guest appearance by Paramore's Hayley Williams, whose vocals blended perfectly with Adkins.
While the band started well, the group stumbled in the middle of the set by playing a few too many B-sides, older and midtempo songs that may have been a treat for longtime fans but seemed to sap some of the momentum. The slower "Dizzy," off the latest CD, didn't work well in concert. And songs such as the heavy "Blister" and the lighter "Here It Goes" were good individually, but all three songs in a row didn't sustain the energy. It also didn't help that an overuse of strobe lights created moments of sensory overload.
The exception to the string of midtempo songs was the gem "Kill" off the "Futures" CD, a slower song that still works well on stage at any point of a concert.
The lull was temporary, however, and Jimmy Eat World finished the night as strong as it began with "Just Tonight," "Bleed American," "Pain," and ending the night with "a happy little dance number," as Adkins called it, "The Middle."
Another reason Jimmy Eat World may have been on their A-game Monday was because they risk being overshadowed each night by opening band Paramore, a group that cites Jimmy Eat World as one of its biggest influences.
The Tennessee-based pop-punk quartet, currently touring as a quintet, proved the transition from outdoor Warped Tour festival stage to arena stage was no problem.The fiery redheaded Williams, who packs a lot of sass, energy and big vocals into her small frame, had the audience jumping and crowd surfing for an hour with songs such as "Born for This" and their big hits, "Crushcrushcrush" and "Misery Business." But it was the group's "other" songs that filled the rest of their set, such as "That's What You Get," "When It Rains" and "Pressure" that should make them a successful act for whatever arena or festival they want to play for years to come.
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