By MIKE CHAIKEN
Perhaps, it was the dawning of something big.
On Saturday, Emblem3, the former “X-Factor” contestants, and MKTO, featuring two former cast members of a Teen Nick show, Gigantic, stepped onto the MGM Grand at Foxwoods stage on the #Bandlife Tour.
And as the mostly young female audience screamed “I Love You” to their favorite band members and sang the words to nearly every track, it was clear the bands had launched themselves into the consciousness of their fans.
And from what I saw, as the hooks of their music became ingrained into my head, the attention was definitely understandable.
I saw a couple of things at the show that gave me an indication of where the two groups stand in the heart of their fans.
First of all, prior to MKTO taking the stage on Saturday, a teen girl pleaded with a security guard to move up to stand closer to the stage. With her hands clenched together over her chest, she told the guard that MKTO was her favorite band and she had to stand at the stage’s edge. When the guard said no, in an understanding manner, she went back to her seat, pouting a bit, grabbed her iPhone, and began punching in a text or Tweet, probably voicing her disappointment.
Following the Emblem3 performance, as I was walking through the lobby at the MGM Grand, a young girl, neatly dressed as if to go to church, about 11 years old, dashed through the space singing Emblem3’s first big hit, “Chloe” at the top of her lungs. She was clearly excited about the evening’s events.
Both Emblem3 and MKTO gave a polished and well produced performance. Sometimes with groups riding a wave of pop popularity, the recorded versions of their songs tend to be better performed then anything they can accomplish live. But there was no sense on Saturday that either ban had found themselves out of their depth.
Both bands offered a night full of catchy hook-filled tunes that left you singing their melodies over and over again when you left the venue.
Emblem3’s “Chloe” and “XOXO” are clearly ear worms.
MKTO’s “Classic” and the closing number, “Goodbye Song” also were hard to forget at the end of the night.
Although Emblem3’s performance put the focus on their vocals when they performed picked up their acoustic guitars for “Tequila Sunrise” they demonstrated they were instrumental talents as well.
Both bands also were extremely fan friendly. Over and over again, both co-conspirators on the #Bandlife Tour gladly took the smartphones of their fans and took selfies appropriate for posting on the fans’ social media of choice.
Both Emblem3 and MKTO clearly gave every indication on Saturday night that their fans’ adoration was well-placed. It will be interesting to see the direction their career goes from here. It may have been MGM Grand today and the Mohegan Sun tomorrow.
I give the Emblem3-MKTO concert at the MGM Grand at Foxwoods on Feb. 22 three out of four stars.
Comments? Email mchaiken@BristolObserver. com.
By MIKE CHAIKEN