Review: The Band Perry rocks Denim and Diamonds

June 23, 2013 

The Denim and Diamonds dinner and concert sponsored by the Columbus Hospice had one of the biggest names in country music as its headliner Saturday night.

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The Band Perry, who has about seven singles that have hit the radio charts, performed. Harris County's Danny Allen opened. He performed about 30 minutes. The Band Perry started around 9 p.m. Including the encore -- which was three songs -- their set lasted about an hour and 20 minutes.

Here's their set list:

Done

You Lie

Miss You Being Gone

Ho Hey (very brief cover of Lumineers tune)

All Your Life

I'll Always Love You (Whitney Houston), Note: Kimberly only sang about 45 seconds of this song

Postcard from Paris

I'm a Keeper

Fat Bottomed Girls (Queen)--Neil Perry led the vocals for this song

Pioneer

Amazing Grace--short, just first verse

Forever Mine Nevermind

Hip to My Heart

Double Heart

If I Die Young

Encore: Some Nights (Fun), Night Gone Wasted, Better Dig Two

Here's Metro Editor Stephanie Pedersen's "grades" of the show:

Length of the show: A-

I give it an A- because I know there are several reasons for what felt like a short concert. First, even though this group has been around for a few years, they really only have two CDs with recognizable songs. And let's face it, most of us probably didn't know the songs on their albums that haven't been released. Second, maybe they agreed to a shorter concert? And last, as you can see from their set list, they played a lot of songs, and most have a very fast tempo. That doesn't help add time to your concert.

Transitions: B-

There were some strange transitions here. The bit of Whitney Houston was awkward, as well as the Amazing Grace that went straight into a song whose third line is this: "My best friend lost her innocence in her boyfriend's rowboat."

Vocals: B+

If you're looking for a lot of vocals, this isn't for you. Kimberly has a beautiful, raspy voice, but she isn't Carrie Underwood. Her range is good, not great. In fact, I'm not sure how she makes it through a tour because there is quite a bit of screaming. Not that that is a bad thing.

Performance: A+

Overall, the show was great! Unlike a lot of concerts, The Band Perry opened with two of their biggest songs. It was a great way to start. The middle was slower for me because I didn't know all of their songs, but Kimberly is such a great performer that she keeps you interested. In my opinion, this group will be around for as long as the two brothers and sister can get along. (And for some families, that's not saying a lot!) To me, if you leave the concert saying to yourself, "I need to buy those CDs," then that's a win!

Some additional impressions from reporter Sonya Sorich:

In some respects, "If I Die Young" was the best and worst thing that could happen to The Band Perry. The 2010 ballad arguably remains their biggest crossover hit, attracting fans in both the country and pop worlds. But at the same time, the song's magnitude made many casual listeners associate the act primarily with ballads.

It's easy to forget that to a large extent, the country music trio is an uptempo act. They proved it at Saturday's Columbus Civic Center show. "This is our playground. This is our recess," lead singer Kimberly Perry said in the early moments of the concert.

High-energy tunes dominated the show, a reminder that the band's repertoire is hardly limited to the melodic calmness that dominates "If I Die Young." It seems like Kimberly Perry is most in her element when singing the revenge-driven lyrics that characterize tunes like "You Lie" and "Double Heart."

I'm still surprised pop radio didn't welcome "You Lie" to the extent that it embraced revenge songs from Carrie Underwood and Taylor Swift. We'll see if the band's recent single, "Done," performs differently.

The June 22 Denim & Diamonds concert was a fundraiser for Columbus Hospice & Columbus Hospice of Alabama. The musicians acknowledged the cause during their set, noting their grandfather received care from a hospice organization.

On a note unrelated to the music, this was my first Denim and Diamonds concert and I saw attire that spanned everything from high heels to cowboy boots to sandals. I got an unofficial estimate that 2,800 people attended. I'll update this file if I get a more accurate number. Previous Denim & Diamonds shows have reportedly attracted "nearly 3,000" guests.

As one of our Facebook fans pointed out after we posted our initial review, it's worth noting that the band hung out after the show to sign autographs. According to the initial announcement, they planned to stick around for two hours. Stephanie and I hung around long enough to see them show up in the merchandise area after the show. Anyone want to weigh in on the post-show experience?

Back to the music: Overall, it was a fun night. Sure, The Band Perry can't boast decades worth of hits -- yet. But the show reaffirmed their potential. For the uninitiated, it also served as a reminder of the act's musical versatility.

Toto, we're not stuck in ballad land anymore.

What did you think about the show? Give us your opinions.

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