Review: Red Hot Chili Peppers @ Oracle Arena | Oakland, CA

red hot chili peppers oakland
Review by Liz Crosby

The Red Hot Chili Peppers have embarked upon the California leg of their global tour.  It was stalled, no thanks to an ankle injury endured by Anthony, which certainly doesn’t seem to be a hindrance now.  Little Dragon opened for them at the Oakland Coliseum this past Tuesday.  They amped up the crowd with their extravagantly edgy sound.

No words could possibly describe the universal feeling of catharsis that courses through you once the Chili Peppers take stage. Regardless of whether you’re a self-proclaimed Peppers fan or not, the band has played an integral part in the music industry for nearly three decades. Their sounds have reverberated within the continuously evolving and unfolding life experiences of so many.

Chad Smith summoned the Chili Pepper spirit, like the culminating of a newly forming storm of energy.  Fleas antics were eccentric as to be expected; he did a handstand across the stage at one point.  Josh Klinghoffer’s ability to play older songs like “I Like Dirt” and “Higher Ground” were very admirable.  He did tend to drift off into his own world while creating riffs for Anthony’s vocals to float on, but Flea was quick to bring him back into the interconnectedness of the band with his keenness for duos.

Anthony and Flea performed bare chested; a far cry from socks, but still greatly appreciated.  It did seem a bit blasphemous to stay by your seat for the concert, while their funky psychedelic rock vibrations coerced you to do a little rambunctious dance.  The coliseum was filled up to the rafters with people eager to take a piece of the Chili Peppers into their beings.  They gave it all away – nostalgic emotions and blossoming creative expansion – all in a highly combustible explosion of sensory perception in the present.

Songs from the new album, “I’m With You” were subtly interwoven into the more familiar songs and were just as captivating.  The encore was incredible, opening with a duo between Chad and the new percussionist.  Anthony took off a little early, but Flea, Josh, and Chad left us with a unique and creative synthesis of their own on the spot harmonious construction.

Flea made sure to leave his audience with a heartfelt message, asserting the significance of music and the necessity to teach it to future generations.  He commanded each of us to make sounds any way we know how. Their devotion to their fans is so evident that it wells up within you like a magnificent wave.  It was truly an astounding evening to be a part of.  I am certain that they will only continue to enhance their performance as they continue their tour.  So, although the prospects for groupies of going home with band members have significantly diminished, their fervor for life will always be with you.

Setlist
1. Monarchy of Roses
2. Dani California
3. Can’t Stop
4. Scar Tissue
5. Factory of Faith
6. Throw Away Your Television
7. Universally Speaking
8. I Could Have Lied
9. The Adventures of Rain Dance Maggie
10. Right on Time
11. Under the Bridge
12. Higher Ground (Stevie Wonder cover)
13. Californication
14. By the Way

Encore:
15. Chad & Mauro & Josh Jam
16. Sir Psycho Sexy
17. They’re Red Hot (Robert Johnson cover)
18. Ethiopia
19. Give It Away
20. Final Jam

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