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Tuesday, November 21st
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Concerts
Civic pride

Amanda was on hand for the Honda Civic Tour's stop in NJ. Check out her review overall.

Triple pleasure!

Curtis Peoples, Keatons Simons, and Tony Lucca rocked the Bitter End in New York. Cris has her take on the concert.

Opening act steals from main attraction in Florida

Meagan was on hand at the Boca Raton, FL stop for Jonas Brothers. Read her take.

JT makes rousing return to Chicago

Two guest writers caught Justin Timberlake's tour stop at Chicago's Allstate Arena.

More concert reviews
Albums
Bubblegum trashed for earthy, acoustic-driven pop/rock

Alan gives two ratings for Mandy Moore's new acoustic and lyric-driven album 'Wild Hope.'

One half of former Norwegian pop duo breaks free with US solo debut

Alan reviews the US debut of former M2M vocalist Marion Raven.

Joss Stone retools sound for a strong third effort

Emily gives her take on the third effort for Joss Stone.

Maroon 5 retools and recrafts sound for splendid second LP

Alan reviews the sophomore effort from Maroon 5.

Indiana native completely sparkles in major-label debut

Cris gives her take on the breakthrough major-label debut of Indiana native Jon McLaughlin.

More reviews
  Justin Timberlake  
Justin Timberlake/Pink (FutureSex/LoveSounds Tour)

JT makes rousing return to Chicago
Justin Ti,berlake Note: This review is written by a pair of guest writers, who were on hand to see Justin Timberlake and Pink at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont, IL on March 12, 2007.

After a year, Justin Timberlake returns on his Futuresex/Lovesound Tour, with opening act Pink.  Pink brought a lot of energy to the crowd, increasing the adrenaline before the main act.  She included songs from all 4 of her main releases.  Pink’s songs ranged from an acoustic version of “Dear Mr. President” to a straight from the video reenactment of “Stupid Girls.”  The audience really seemed to be very impressed by the political acoustic version of “Dear Mr. President.”  Shortly before this crowd pleaser was the satirical version of “Stupid Girls.”  The song included two women walking around with inflated bosoms that were later to be popped by Pink.  Pink interacted with her audience by sharing her favorite dance move, stating that it was dorky but that she was proud to be a dork.  Another memorable performance was at the end when she performed “Get This Party Started.” The former gymnast ended her performance with an aerobatic routine.  Overall, she brought her bad girl attitude to the stage but she was also proud to bring out her “dork” side for all to see.

During the intermission there were many marriage proposals to both Pink and Justin.  Among these was a real proposal to Shelby, who moments later accepted.

Justin Timberlake teased his audience by being surrounded by screens on all sides in the center stage. Still behind screens, continuously repeating the tour’s name, the cheers from the audience grew.  When Justin finally did emerge from his circle of screens the crowd went wild.  The concert started with a very high-energy performance of Futuresex/Lovesound.  In between piano performances, Justin had a talk with the audience.  He said he felt bad for not coming to Chicago in a year, and asked whoever had a drink to raise it up.  After putting lime into his tequila, Justin took a shot with the audience, saying that it was his promise to come back.  He explained he did it for two reasons; one, he loves Chicago, two, he wanted an excuse to drink on stage.  During his over two hour long performance, Justin did everything from playing instruments such as the guitar and the piano, to dancing and singing.  The stage that featured both Justin and Pink, left no one in the audience with a bad seat.  There was a round circle in the center, with two rectangles attached stretching out on both sides.  If Justin was on one side, there were dancers and instruments to observe on all other sides.  Also circling the main stage were transparent screens showing a close up version of Justin, no matter where he was.  These screens were constantly changing, being raised and lowered based on the need of stage space.  They played an important role during “Losing My Way” to make it appear as though a church choir surrounded Justin.  Justin’s energetic songs and soothing voice put the audience through a range of emotions, while he as a performer kept the audience wanting more. During Justin's performance of his latest hit "What Goes Around... / ...Comes Around” he used an individual camera much like his performance at The Grammys.  The star took the camera in his hand on stage, and sang into the camera, with a very close up version of Justin on the screens surrounding the stage.  He would swing the camera around his body during the chorus of the song, creating a full circle.  The way the camera was used emphasized the powerful emotions of the song. 

His dancing skills paired with his upbeat songs could put anyone in a mood to dance.  Justin sang songs mainly from his newest release Futuresex/Lovesound, but included hits from his first album Justified, and also a solo performance of “Gone” from his ‘Nsync days saying it was a special song to him.  His interaction with the audience was something that made the girls wild, when he came back on stage for his last performance, he looked into the camera and stated “it’s just the two of us, you and me.” 

"Sexyback" was one of the highlighted performances of the night. Everyone in the audience recognized the luscious sounds of his hit song. Justin brought out his right hand man Timbaland and got the arena moving.  His interaction with the crowd during this song was something to make the girls scream, between his dance moves and having the audience echo after him, “SexyBack” was a high energy performance to remember.

Among one of the lower points of the evening was Timbaland’s intermission that was like watching a long commercial for his album release on April 3.  There were pop songs, and older favorites such as Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” that were featured, that the crowd sung along too.  Unfortunately these songs did not seem to fit into the musical pattern of the night.  The most memorable of this short intermission was the tribute to Aaliyah featuring photographs and video clips from her life.

Overall the concert as a whole was non stop energy and had an intimate feeling, even though you were surrounded by so many people.



-Katrina Ryefield and Melissa Maffiola
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