Live Review: Hanson and Paul McDonald at House of Blues, September 24, 2013

Photo by Ana Barroso

House of Blues was alive with the energy of a middle school dance last Tuesday.

The evening began with opening act Paul McDonald, a folk/indie/pop singer, along with his nameless, well-coiffed right-hand man. McDonald might as well have remained nameless too though, being that every mention of headlining act Hanson produced more shrills of excitement than every song he performed combined.

It was a glorious moment once Hanson bounded on stage, opening with the first track from their new album, Anthem. To the seasoned fan – which, from the response from the audience, most of the attendees were — it was clear that Hanson had pushed their own envelope on this album, trying rock and roll on for size in contrast to their signature self-described “soul pop.”

Through the almost hour-and-a-half set, the band of brothers took the crowd on a journey of fan favorites from throughout their 21-year career. (Yes, they’ve been a band for over two decades. We have gotten old.) And despite common conception, Isaac, Taylor, and Zac have gotten old too.

Each brother shared the spotlight at one point or another, but the one that stole the show was the youngest of the three, Zac. Normally a reserved and aloof drum monkey, he showcased his instrumental talents, switching from playing barbarian-style drums to pretty piano to folky, acoustic guitar. He definitely proved to be the most musically gifted musician of the trio.

It was clear that Hanson know how to please a crowd, as the adoring fans they’ve kept hooked for so many years can attest. It’s been said that their lasting power can be attributed to their accessibility through social media, exclusive fan club content, and pre-show events. And after Isaac’s amusing tumble into the audience at the end of the band’s set, they can add unintentional stage dives to that list.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.