When you suddenly hear your favorite song given a rock acoustic treatment and actually sounds better than the original version, you must be hearing Boyce Avenue performing.
Typically armed with just an acoustic guitar, cajón (box drum) and a keyboard, YouTube’s most followed band has been known for its stripped-down rendition of radio-friendly songs. But at the concert at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Tuesday, the trio showcased not just what they are known for, they also delighted thousands of concertgoers with what they do best – stage an electrifying show with nothing but musical explosion.
Case in point, when the band, composed of brothers Alejandro, Daniel, and Fabian Manzano, performed Adele’s massively popular song “Hello,” the audience was brought to an adrenalized state. Although they were familiar with the song, Alejandro’s rich and soulful vocals and his brothers’ incredible guitar flair, made the single sounded as good as Adele’s version if not uniquely better (at least to the ears of rock acoustic fanatics).
The band’s frontman visibly perked up the crowd when he hollered, “Mahal namin kayo.”
That shoutout alone made the audience forget that they waited for more than an hour (or make it more than two hours) if we were to discount Savannah Outenand At Sunset’s performances as the concert’s front acts.
Alejandro, the youngest member of Boyce Avenue, kept the audience connected with the band all throughout the show by telling them how the band appreciates their Filipino fans.
“I’d like to introduce you to my brother Favian, my name is Alejandro and here’s my other brother Daniel. Together, with you, we are Boyce Avenue. We first played here in 2009. It was the first time we played outside the US. Thousands showed up. It was amazing,” said the 29-year-old musician.
Then he asked, “Who among you discovered us through YouTube? We do a lot of acoustic on our YouTube channel. I hope you don’t mind us playing some acoustics tonight.”
As expected, their 90-minute show featured covers of familiar songs like Kings of Leon’s “Use Somebody,” Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud,” Avicii’s “Wake Me Up,” Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car,” Bruno Mars’s “Locked Out Of Heaven” and Shawn Mendes’s “Stitches.”
Every number was well received including originals such as “Be Somebody,” “Cinderella,” “Imperfect Me,” and “Pick Yourself Back Up Again,” which are all part of an EP they’re currently promoting.
At the encore, Alejandro went back onstage alone. With his guitar slung over his shoulder he conversed with the crowd that suddenly packed the front side of the stage, “We are not done quite yet, I hope you don’t mind if I will play some songs back to back. Just you and me just promise that you’ll sing with me.”
He performed an acoustic medley before calling his brothers back out with him and blasted the stage with their final number.
The trio embarked on a five-city tour in various parts of the country playing hits and songs culled from their latest album, and Manila was their first pit stop. They also visited Cagayan De Oro, Cebu, Bacolod and Baguio.
The concert, which is Boyce Avenue’s fifth visit in the country, is part of the ongoing Be Somebody world tour.
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