Hanson pleases fans at Kern Couty Fair, disappoints reporter
October 7, 2009
Filed under Reviews
When I agreed to review Hanson’s concert at the Kern County Fair on Sept. 28, I was oddly excited. Although never a fan of the band, even in their heyday, it seemed like it’d be a fun flashback to the 90s and my elementary school days. I entered the packed Budweiser Pavilion optimistic, but after two or three songs I realized how foolish I had been to be so hopeful.
It’s not that their music made my ears bleed or anything. They sang and played their instruments well and they seemed excited to be there. Taylor Hanson especially got into his music, kicking his piano bench away while banging on the piano keys. After playing together for 17 years, I would expect well-played music and Hanson delivered.
But that’s about as far as my compliments can go. With each song, I got more and more tired of being there. All the songs sounded the same and started to blur and at the beginning of each song I thought, “Please, let this be their last song.” But when each song started and it wasn’t “MMMBop,” I knew I was in trouble. Of course Hanson could not put on a show without playing their biggest, and arguably only, hit, and I had a feeling they would play it last, a good strategic move on the band’s part, as half the crowd left after they finally played that song, even though they still had two more to play. Hey, at least they kept the crowd for most of the show.
What surprised me the most was how many people actually knew the words to all the songs and sang and danced along with them. I knew Hanson kept recording after their one-hit-wonder, and I knew they maintained a decent following, but I certainly did not expect this many people to know so many Hanson songs. The dancing, singing and screaming girls quickly began to annoy me, especially the girl to my right who had the worst dance moves I have seen in my life. It was like watching a train wreck, but one that was slightly more interesting than watching Hanson.
The band took two breaks during their performance, which struck me as both odd and unnecessary. What, were they soft-rocking out a bit too hard and needed a quick breather? Is their music really that demanding? The breaks weren’t long and they didn’t come out with different clothing, so I’m still confused at the purpose of those breaks, as well as kind of annoyed. I could have been out of there two minutes earlier, Hanson. Not cool.
While the concert went on much longer than I thought necessary, the band and the fans seemed to enjoy themselves and I can’t be too irritated that I, a non-fan of the band, didn’t like the concert. Hanson wasn’t putting on a show for me, they were putting on a show for their fans, who I’m sure would disagree with me and say that they loved the concert, and that’s great. I’m glad somebody did.