I sit here embarrassed as I write this. In my head I’m thinking how tired I feel after being out a little late last night due to attending the Pink – The Truth About Love tour at the Bell Centre last night. The embarrassment arises because of the fact that I just stayed out late whereas Pink expended so much energy during her show that I cannot in all good conscience whine.
Pink has always had a kickass and take no prisoners attitude over the course of her twelve year music career (so far). Last night she took that up several notches. For the past couple of years Pink has dabbled in aerial stunts during her live performances. On this tour she makes acrobatics a centerpiece of the show. The Truth About Love has all the accoutrements of your typical pop act tour in that there are lots of lights, costume changes, pyrotechnics, huge video screens, an interesting backdrop, and lots of nubile half-dressed back up dancers. In that regard it was a rather typical show. How it was atypical was when the acrobatic aspect was pulled in.
From the moment that Pink was catapulted from somewhere underneath the stage on bungee type straps being held by three very muscular men suspended in the air on a metal contraption you knew it was game on! The fact that she could sing in key while being slingshot around the stage amazed me. One look at Pink’s physique you can understand how she pulls this off. Her abs are akin to Gwen Stefani’s and she has got some impressive guns as well. At 5’4” she is petite, but powerful. Endurance is involved in the acrobatics she performs over the course of the almost two hour show as well as coordination. And remember she is doing all this somersaulting in midair and spinning while singing.
Her singing matches her physique in that her voice is powerful. Pink has an incredible set of lungs that allow her power through her songs while doing all this stuff. On the numbers she stripped away all the distractions her voice is what wowed. A sparkling example of this was her latest single “Just Give Me a Reason”, which is a duet with Nate Ruess of fun. Ruess, through the technology of video was there singing on stage with her, but it was Pink’s pipes that won the dueling voices competition. She has to be considered one of pop’s most powerful vocalists.
After a short acoustic section, the energy was again pumped up for the final two songs, “Sluts Like You” and “Blow Me (One Last Kiss)”. You’d think after all this that the lady could not possibly top it. Once again she proved me wrong and did two encores that were very different, but equally amazing. The first song was “So What” and once again Pink was in a harness doing amazing stuff in the air. This time, however, she upped the visual ante by “flying” out over the crowd while suspended in the harness. She did more flips and spins as she got out over parts of the crowd allowing them to see her up close. After a short delay she was out again with a very beautiful aerial act for the song “Glitter in the Air”. It was a recreation of the same performance she did at the Grammys a few years back. Gentle and twirly on a swath of silky material. The woman has no fear.
The smarts and down-to-earthness of the woman also shone through in how she handled the gap between her set and the opening act and the requisite encore(s). Besides all the aerial work and acrobatics, another aspect that reminded me of the Cirque du Soleil shows I have seen was the mc of the show. About ten minutes before Pink took the stage a clown (surrounded by a spotlight) began working the crowd. This is a common Cirque du Soleil move. His antics distracted the crowd from the passing time. When Pink was ready to start at about 9:15 this clown/mc took the stage and introduced himself as Rubix Von Füchenhürtz. He was to be the host of the game show called The Truth About Love. Cheesy, I know, but it worked. The mc came back again at different points of the show allowing the headliner to catch her breath and change her outfit. What I like best is when he came out at the end of the show before the encore that everyone knew was going to happen and once again distracted the crowd with a speech. We didn’t have to stand there stamping, applauding and screaming at the top of our lungs for something that has already been planned to happen. Love her!
Swedish oddball rockers The Hives opened up the show with a short just over thirty minute set. What it lacked in length they made up for in energy and garage rock. All five members came out dressed in tuxedos with frontman Pelle Almqvist decked out in a top hat and tails. Plenty of screams and microphone twirls ensued.
1) Raise Your Glass
2) Walk of Shame
3) Just Like a Pill
4) U + Ur Hand
5) Leave Me Alone (I’m Lonely)
6) Wicked Game (Chris Isaak cover)
7) Just Give Me a Reason
9) Are We All We Are
10) How Come You’re Not Here
12) Family Portrait (piano accompaniment)
13) Who Knew (acoustic)
14) F*%ckin’ Perfect
15) Most Girls/There You Go/You Make Me Sick
16) Slut Like You
17) Blow Me (One Last Kiss)
19) So What
20) Glitter in the Air