By Natalie Paterson
Photos by Andrew Hartl
An incredible concert was brought to the Molson Canadian Amphitheater on Tuesday night, bringing together three great groups (and even better friends) for one hell of a show. Train‘s Picasso at the Wheel tour came to Toronto for one of their only Canadian tour stops, and I’m so happy I got to see it.
The show began with Matt Nathanson, and he started things off absolutely right. He and his band brought a ton of energy to the crowd, even poking fun at a few audience members in between songs. He even came into the crowd while he sang “Headphones”, and ate some of an audience member’s chicken nuggets. It was so much fun. He sang some of his bigger songs, including “Faster”, “Headphones”, and his platinum-selling hit “Come On Get Higher”. His was an excellent opening act.
Next up was The Fray. I’ve seen these guys live in concert before, and I know they bring their hearts to the stage every time they perform. It definitely showed in this performance. Lead singer Isaac Slade wasn’t as talkative as the act he followed, but he definitely brought the high energy expected. He also ventured into the crowd to sing with the audience, and had a great time with everyone. The band delivered a great set list, including “How to Save a Life”, “You Found Me”, “Never Say Never”, “Love Don’t Die”, and a rendition of A-ha’s “Take On Me”. It was an awesome lead up to the headliners.
In between sets, the venue played some great music, including Journey, Queen, Rick James and the Bee Gees. It definitely helped to keep the crowd dancing while the stage was set.
Finally, we got to the headliners: Train. And let me tell you, it was an absolutely worthwhile wait. Lead singer Pat Monahan had a great time with the audience, really livening up the whole show. I have to say, this concert was definitely a different one compared to those I’ve attended in the past. Not only did Pat throw t-shirts into the crowd, he also tossed the one that he was wearing, which he had signed by the entire band while on stage. He also did a live Periscope broadcast during the performance, which was a first for me.
The group performed a fabulous set of songs including “50 Ways to Say Goodbye”, “Free”, “Calling All Angels”, and “Drive By”, and they left the audience with some real treats. At one point, Monahan brought Matt Nathanson and Isaac Slade back on stage for a rendition of “With a Little Help from My Friends”, which was a lot of fun for everyone. Throughout the acts, they talked about how long they’d known each other and how long they’ve been performing, and it definitely came across in this performance.
Finally, Train closed out with an encore including “Bulletproof Picasso”, a cover of Aerosmith’s “Dream On”, and finished with their iconic song, “Drops of Jupiter”. It was a fitting end to a seriously fantastic concert. If these guys come back in summer 2016 (or in general) I definitely recommend seeing them live. This was such a fitting way to start off the summer concert season, for me anyway.
The Picasso at the Wheel tour continues throughout Canada and the U.S. until September 20.
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