California-based alternative rockers Incubus brought transcendent energy to Caesars Windsor for their performance on Saturday, August 5, 2023.
No monologues, no banter, just 90-minutes of hard, tight-knit, art-inspired rock ‘n roll.
“Thanks for coming to the concert, kids,” front man Brandon Boyd told the packed Colosseum crowd.
“We love you. I… heart… you.”
Boyd’s incredible vocal range was on full display from the opening note, as the West Coast rockers didn’t waste any time showering their fans with hit after hit.
The artistic influences of the band created a pleasingly visual and overall immersive experience for the audience.
The massive screen at the back of the stage showed colourful and trippy graphics, which perfectly complemented the beaming light display, which was often reminiscent of California ocean waves at sunset, flowing over the Windsor crowd.
Boyd showered the crowd with gracious admiration throughout the performance, pointing the microphone toward the concert-goers, inspiring sing-alongs for their classics like ‘Sellar’ and the closing number ‘Drive’.
The vocalist was flanked by fellow founding members, and high school classmates, lead guitarist Mike Einziger and drummer José Pasillas, along with turntablist/DJ Chris Kilmore and current touring member Nicole Row on bass guitar.
Formerly of Panic! At The Disco, Row has handled the bass for the band since March, while long-time bassist Ben Kenney recovers from a brain tumour.
Seamlessly integrating into the band’s sound and dynamic, Row’s chops stood out especially during the intro of ‘Sick Sad Little World’ during the middle of the set.
The track from 2004’s A Crow Left of the Murder brought the band to another level and put their musicianship on full display.
Row’s thumping bass and Pasillas’ pounding percussion, were followed by an exhilarating Einziger guitar solo while Boyd crouched before his long-time bandmate with outstretched arms and fingers, appearing to cast a spell and take in some of the ineffable energy.
To top it off, Kilmore stood back from his turntable and unleashed his mountain of dreadlocks, swinging them wildly before the kaleidoscope video backdrop and amongst the unified force created by the California rockers.
Staples in their live performances, Incubus performed four songs in Windsor from their 2001 album Morning View: ‘Are You In?’, ‘Just a Phase’, ‘Nice to Know You’ and ‘Wish You Were Here’.
A few days earlier, it was announced by Virgin Music, Incubus’ new record label, that the critically acclaimed double platinum album has been re-recorded by the band and a special edition of the record, entitled Morning View XXIII, would be released.
They also announced they’d be playing the album in its entirety at their previously announced show at the Hollywood Bowl on October 6, 2023.
“We are excited to partner up with Virgin to release Morning View XXIII, and we can’t wait to perform it live for the fans at The Hollywood Bowl,” Boyd said in a media release.
“Morning View XXIII will give our fans a fresh new take on the songs and we look forward to sharing it with everyone when it drops on Oct 6th. It’s also incredibly special to reunite with Jacqueline (Saturn) at Virgin who was with us at the very beginning of our career.”
Incubus paid homage to some rock n’ roll heavy weights during their Caesars set: playing a groovy cover of ‘Come Together’ by The Beatles, including a tag of The Doors’ hit Riders of the Storm to ‘Are You In?’ and adding a clever tag of Pink Floyd’s ‘Wish You Were Here’ to the outro of their own song of the same name.
Here is the full setlist from the Windsor show:
1. Magic Medicine
3. Anna Molly
4. Just a Phase
5. Nice to Know You
6. Absolution Calling
7. The Warmth
8. Make Yourself
9. Karma, Come Back
10 Come Together (The Beatles cover)
11. Sick Sad Little World
13. Are You In?
14. Pardon Me
17. Wish You Were Here
More details about the band can be found at https://www.incubushq.com/.
Fellow Californians and alternative rockers Badflower set the tone for the evening with an energetic performance.
“I think this is the first time we’ve played Windsor,” singer/guitarist Josh Katz told the crowd.
Katz also did a quick cheering survey to determine if there were more Canadians or Americans in the crowd.
The hometown fans appeared to come out on top slightly.
“There is more Canadians, eh?” Katz said.
Toward the end of their set, Katz climbed off the stage and sat in the front row while singing and playing his guitar, he then made his way to the upper portion of the Colosseum to perform a few more lines of the tune.
Fans thumbed their phones to record the entertaining moment, while catching a glimpse of the front man buzzing through the audience.
The band is composed of Katz, lead guitarist Joey Morrow, bass guitarist Alex Espiritu and drummer Anthony Sonetti.
Their full setlist, included:
1. Don’t Hate Me
2. Johnny Wants to Fight
5. The Jester
More details about the band can be found at https://www.badflowermusic.com/.
Photo: An autographed poster gifted to the SWOMP team by our friends and neighbours Miranda and DeeJay 🙂