Article and Photos by: Michael Flores
Miami, FL – On a hot and humid summer evening, fans of The Smashing Pumpkins made their way into the crowded American Airlines Arena to see the reunion tour of the American Alternative/Classic Rock band from Chicago, Illinois. The reunion tour consists of 3 out of the 4 original members: Lead Vocalist/guitars Billy Corgan, guitarist James Iha, and drummer Jimmy Chamberlin. The Shiny and Oh So Bright Tour also coincides with the 30th anniversary since the band originated in 1988.
Kicking off the night was Metric, a Canadian rock band from Toronto with a synthetic pop rock sound. Metric’s latest album was in 2015, Pagans in Vegas, and they are currently developing a new album with a new sound. While Metric took the stage, there seemed to be few major fans cheering them on, and this may have been caused by the fact that people were still pouring into the venue while Metric was on stage. I was able to see three songs. The crowd cheered them on between songs, and Metric’s performance was good, but their method of hyping the crowd for the headliner seemed lackluster.
The main focus of the Shiny and Oh So Bright Tour was on The Smashing Pumpkin’s first five albums, and this was pretty evident from the beginning of the show. When the lights cut out and they started showing the montage of different artworks throughout the years, and various albums and videos, it was a dead giveaway. The show started out very strong, with Billy Corgan’s solo acoustic performance of “Disarm,” which is one of my absolute favorite songs. Another montage appeared on the giant screen, this time of his childhood photos and videos. Fans cheered loudly, ecstatic after the first performance and anxiously ready for the next. This was just the beginning.
Diehard fans of The Smashing Pumpkins definitely got their money’s worth with this 3 hour set. Although the stadium was not sold out, most of the lower bowl was packed. As I looked around, I could see every single person around me singing along to whatever song was playing. It is undeniable that The Smashing Pumpkins put on an outstanding show. Every single detail, from the music quality to the lighting design and projector integration, and even Billy’s multiple outfit changes, were captivating and intriguing. One thing that definitely stood out to me was this shiny silver trenchcoat/robe that looked like something out of a sci-fi movie.
Nearing the end of the show, the band played some amazing cover songs, such as David Bowie’s “Space Oddity,” Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide,” and one of my personal favorites, Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven.” What a way to engage and excite the crowd! Fans had the opportunity to hear some of their smash hits, such as “Tonight, Tonight” and “1979.”
Overall, The Smashing Pumpkins put on a spectacular show for their fans, which they enjoyed and were glad to have experienced. The Smashing Pumpkins will continue their national tour until early September, and then internationally until mid-October. If you have been wanting to see The Smashing Pumpkins live and in action, definitely check them out if they are in an area near you.