Chris Loomis

Cheap Trick @ Pacific Amphitheater – 08/11/2021

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There is no better way to spend a summer night in August than to attend the OC Fair and then migrate over to the Pacific Amphitheater to see a concert. With the cool coastal Costa Mesa air and the smell of fair food, Wednesday night August 11 was that perfect night as Rock n Roll Hall of Fame veteran rockers Cheap Trick along with Blue Oyster Cult played a SOLD OUT show. The Pacific Amphitheater was packed with die-hard rock n roll fans of all ages eager to get back out to experience live music.

With an early start at 7:30pm Blue Oyster took the stage and opened their show with the 1979 upbeat rocker “Dr. Music” off their Mirrors album with Eric Bloom on lead vocals. Along with Bloom fellow guitarist and vocalist Buck Dharma have been fronting this legendary band together since 1969 – WOW! The band played “That Was Me” from their 2020 album The Symbol Remains which has a catchy riff as expected from BOC. Of course, “Godzilla” was played and there certainly was enough “cowbell” as the band ended their time onstage with “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper”. A great set to prime the crowd for Cheap Trick.

Blue Oyster Cult Photo Gallery

Blue Oyster Cult Setlist

Dr. Music | Before the Kiss, a Redcap | That Was Me | Burnin’ for You | E.T.I. (Extra Terrestrial Intelligence) | Godzilla | (Don’t Fear) The Reaper

Encore: Cities on Flame With Rock and Roll

Cheap Trick took the stage one by one then blasted over the PA “Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls, please welcome to the stage, the best FU#@CKIN rock band you have ever seen – Cheap Trick” and the night started with “Hello There” then right into the 1980 song “Just Got Back”. Vocalist Robin Zander decked out in a white coat and large white top hat sounded spot on from start to finish. Guitarist Rick Nielsen then took the mic and stated “Just in case you are not sure, we are the one and only Cheap Trick” and then introduced “Lookout” from Budokan.

This night was a family affair onstage as in addition to Zander and Nielsen on vocals and guitar respectively, you had Daxx Nielsen on drums and Robin Taylor Zander on bass. The foursome was tight and energetic as they blasted out the hits including “Big Eyes”, “Ain’t That a Shame” and “California Man” and they even threw in “The Summer Looks Good on You” from their April 2021 release In Another World. The young Zander took lead vocals for a killer rendition of 1977’s “Downed” and the crowd was treated to a brief drum solo by Daxx Nielsen.

Rick Nielsen certainly keeps his guitar tech busy as he seems to use a different guitar on almost every song and he at one point blurted out “It’s great to be back playing again” and while the band certainly was having fun, the crowd was enjoying the night as much or more as it seemed everyone in attendance was blurting out the lyrics and singing along to every song. The end of the set was jammed packed with the huge hits as Zander swapped his white top hat for his trademark police duty hat as the band ended the main set with “Dream Police”.

Of course, the encore was “Surrender” which had EVERYONE on their feet and Nielsen brought out the trademark 5 neck guitar for the last song “Goodnight Now”. Robin Zander ended the show with a “Good Night – we are Cheap Trick” and the four gave a bow and a wave prior to leaving the stage. Another epic performance from well “The best FU#@CKIN rock band you have ever seen – Cheap Trick”.

Cheap Trick Setlist

Hello There | Just Got Back | Lookout | Hot Love | Borderline | Big Eyes | Ain’t That a Shame | California Man | The Summer Looks Good on You | Voices | Baby Loves to Rock | Downed (sung by Robin Taylor Zander) | The ‘In’ Crowd | Stiff Competition | The Flame | I Want You to Want Me | Dream Police

Encore: Surrender | Goodnight Now

Cheap Trick Photo Gallery

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