Photos and highlights: Boyce Avenue in Manila
It wasn’t their first time to perform in Manila, but Boyce Avenue’s Valentine’s Day show at the Smart Araneta Coliseum was certainly, according to them, their biggest yet. Let’s look back on some of the highlights.
1. When Boyce Avenue appeared, they acknowledged that it was a dream come true to play at the Big Dome
Alejandro, Fabian and Daniel Manzano, collectively known as Boyce Avenue, walked onstage at a few minutes past 9PM wearing matching outfits—white button-down shirts and black jeans (Youngest brother Daniel looked especially spiffy wearing a black bowtie).
After the first song, “Speed Limit,” lead vocalist Alejandro told the crowd that since first performing in Manila in 2009, the band had always wanted to come back and play at the Araneta Coliseum. “This is officially the biggest show we’ve ever done,” he said with a huge grin. The crowd, of course, went wild.
2. One of the guys was sipping wine in between songs
I thought it was cool that bassist/percussionist and little brother Daniel sipped red wine from an actual wine glass that was continually replenished throughout the evening. It was Valentine’s Day after all, and you could say he was on a “date” with everyone else at the venue that night.
3. The band interspersed covers of popular songs with their own material.
Boyce Avenue, of course, first gained popularity with acoustic covers of songs by other artists which they uploaded to YouTube. Through the years they have since expanded their repertoire by writing and performing original songs. At the show last night, it was an almost even split between covers and originals, with a slight favor towards their own songs.
For every “Teenage Dream” (Katy Perry), “A Sky Full Of Stars (Coldplay), “Story Of My Life” (One Direction), “Fast Car” (Tracy Chapman) and “Locked Out Of Heaven” (Bruno Mars), they played “Hear Me Now,” “I Had To Try,” “Find Me,” “On My Way,” and “One Life.” Clearly it was a message that they were far from being one-dimensional.
4. They brought a girl up onstage to take a selfie, just because it was Valentine’s Day
Concert producer Ovation Productions scored a coup by scheduling the concert on the most romantic night of the year. “You could have gone anywhere else, but thank you for choosing to come here and spending the evening with us,” Alejandro said.
And just to tease the single ladies in the crowd even more, the guys invited a girl onstage to take a selfie with the band. Carrying a balloon and wearing a Boyce Avenue shirt, she got a hug from each of the brothers, too, eliciting envious screams and sighs from the audience.
5. They did a stellar cover of Coldplay’s “Fix You”
Proving how much they love Chris Martin and co.’s band, Boyce Avenue did their second Coldplay cover of the evening towards the end of the regular set. A strategically timed fog machine and jet smoke blasts turned the rendition into a definite highlight of the night (but maybe that’s just me, because I love the song, no matter who’s singing it).
6. The guys came back out for a three-song encore, and everyone loved it
The brothers didn’t keep their fans waiting for long. After a quick break, they ran back out to do “Broken Angel,” a cover of the Kings of Leon hit “Use Somebody,” and the big finale, their own song “Every Breath.” Boyce Avenue aren’t exactly doing anything to revolutionize music, but what they do offer is inoffensive, ear-friendly pop-rock that appeals to a wide demographic of music listeners. And there’s really nothing wrong with that.
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Paolo Abad is a film/television editor and motion graphic designer. He is also a self-confessed concert junkie. Follow his Instagram for live music @outoftunephoto