Keep on Crushin’ It
By Amber Petersen and Ivana Vicentijevic
Touring an album for almost a full year might get boring after a while, but Brad Paisley sure knows how to spice up a concert tour. He was in Camrose only six months ago for Big Valley Jamboree, yet Friday night’s concert had enough creative flair and past hits that it was hard to tell it was the same tour. It is impossible to be disappointed any time Brad hits the road. With over a dozen headlining gigs already under his belt, he is well versed in mixing up an album already toured.
Lighting the arena up with a few summer hits from his latest album, Moonshine in the Trunk, Paisley took the stage by storm with a frenzy of lights and vivid videos streaming on a massive 60’ screen. With barely a breath between songs, the transition from new hits (“Riverbank”, “Moonshine in the Trunk”, “Crushin’ It”) to old favourites (“She’s Everything”, “Waitin’ on a Woman”, “Mud on the Tires”) was seamless song after song. As always, Paisley’s skills as a guitarist took center stage – every song has a signature shred and the spaces between were filled with solos that would make even the best Guitar Hero look silly.
As if playing hit after hit wasn’t enough, Friday’s concert was jam-packed full of surprises. Fan favourite “Whiskey Lullaby” was an amazing addition to the set list, as Paisley was joined on stage by opener Cam and her outstanding vocals. After transitioning from the main stage to a smaller satellite stage in the crowd, Paisley called up an old friend. Carrie Underwood’s dressing room appeared on stage as she rushed on screen to perform her lines of “Remind Me” and trade some tough love with Brad. To top it all off, Edmontonian Brett Kissel hopped on stage to perform his own song “Airwaves” and to compete in a giant game of Mario Kart against Eric Paslay (the second opener for the night).
Eric Paslay worked up the crowd right before the headliner came on stage, mostly with hits he had written for other artists (such as Jake Owen’s “Barefoot Blue Jean Night” and Lady Antebellum’s “Friday Night”). Paslay’s band had a great sound but left something to be desired.
Cam’s performance with Paisley was foreshadowed by her powerful opening set. Reminiscent of female country superstars of the 90’s, the blonde bombshell belted out what will surely become country music’s latest hits as she strutted the stage with overflowing confidence.
The stage is Brad Paisley’s wheelhouse. Regardless of how many times he may tour the same album, we have no doubt he will keep crushin’ it!