Beck and Phoenix bring the heat to Concord, CA thanks to Summer Odyssey tour

On a scorching summer day in Concord, California, where the temperature soared to a blistering 95 degrees, an unforgettable musical extravaganza unfolded. Despite the sweltering heat that usually left me seeking refuge indoors, the allure of witnessing the combined brilliance of Beck and Phoenix was too compelling to resist. Their co-headlining Summer Odyssey tour had descended upon the Toyota Pavilion at Concord on a Saturday, captivating a jam-packed audience and creating an atmosphere of electrifying anticipation.

Kicking off the evening was the band Sir Chloe, setting the stage with a succinct yet impactful set featuring tracks from their albums Party Favors and I Am The Dog. The crowd was treated to the pulsating rhythms of “Animal,” the infectious melodies of “Michelle,” and the edgy tones of “Salivate,” setting the tone for the musical journey ahead. Jenny Lewis followed suit, offering a more extended performance that spanned across albums like Joy’All, The Voyager, Acid Tongue, and On the Line, enthralling the audience with her eclectic mix of tunes.

Then, the stage came alive with the energy of French rockers Phoenix. Bursting onto the scene with their hit “Listomania,” the crowd erupted in unison, lending their voices to the lyrics. A cascade of familiar tunes followed, including the dynamic “Lasso,” the introspective “Armistice,” the enchanting “Rome,” and the anthemic “1901” from the album Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix. The band seamlessly incorporated tracks from their latest album Alpha Zulu, such as the soulful “After Midnight,” the euphoric “Tonight,” the mesmerizing “Alpha Zulu,” and the ethereal “Winter Solstice.” A visual spectacle unfolded, featuring grand palaces, cosmic vistas, and captivating kaleidoscope patterns that seemed to make the band levitate in a dreamscape. The four core members of Phoenix—singer Thomas Mars, guitarists Christian Mazzalai and Laurent Brancowitz, and bassist Deck D’Arcy—were joined by long-time drummer Thomas Hedlund and keyboardist Robin Coudert, creating an immersive sonic experience. As the final notes resonated, Mars embarked on an epic crowd-surfing adventure, traversing the aisles before gracefully returning to the stage.

Beck, with a rich and illustrious 30-year career, assumed the spotlight. The concertgoers were treated to a musical journey through time, as Beck and his band began with the infectious “Devils Haircut” and delved into a treasure trove of songs. Tour debuts like the enchanting “Girl,” the vibrant “Gamma Ray,” the eccentric “Debra,” and the evocative “Paper Tiger” added a fresh dimension to the performance. The crowd erupted in jubilation as the iconic strains of “Loser,” “Dreams,” “Sexx Laws,” and “E-Pro” reverberated through the air. The stage transformed into an expansive canvas, displaying a captivating array of art and videos that perfectly complemented Beck’s eclectic sonic palette. A moment of musical unity occurred when Phoenix joined Beck for their collaborative new song “Odyssey.” The grand finale saw the convergence of musical talents as Sir Chloe and Jenny Lewis joined Beck and Phoenix on stage for a rousing rendition of “Where It’s At,” bringing the unforgettable night to a triumphant close.

Being unexpectedly bestowed with the opportunity to capture this concert through photography was a stroke of luck I’ll forever cherish.

Witnessing the electric synergy of Beck and Phoenix live was an experience beyond words. If given the chance, I wholeheartedly endorse seizing the opportunity to catch these musical titans on their tour—an experience that promises to be nothing short of awe-inspiring.

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