By MIKE CHAIKEN
Most acts who find themselves riding to the top of the charts with just one or two albums under their belt find themselves in a bit of a bind when they headline their first concert tours.
They may have a handful of hits. But do they have an evening’s worth of material to fill in around those hits?
Some acts resort to pulling in cover songs of acts that influenced them. Others pad it out with long guitar or drum solos.
So, the fact that Fifth Harmony, which is touring behind only its second full-length album “7/27,” is able to perform for an hour and a half, as it did at the Mohegan Sun on July 30, is pretty amazing in itself. And the fact that the show was all killer, no filler, was even more amazing.
Fifth Harmony, which came together in the second season of the now defunct “X Factor,” has been picking up a hit here and a hit there ever since their first EP. And as the evening at the Mohegan Sun developed, you quickly realized how many hits
Ally Brooke, Camila Cabello, Normani Kordei, Dinah Jane, and Lauren Jauregui have picked up in their short time together. “Better Together,” “Sledgehammer.” “Boss,” “Worth It,” and the latest ones, “Work From Home” and the latest “All In My Head (Flex).”
Not bad for a group is still on its sophomore album effort.
The great thing, though, about their performance on July 30 was that the songs that weren’t hits still had you bopping your head, dancing in your seat, and humming the hooks.
The show also was at full steam all night. The amount of dancing the members did all night would have put the young dancers on “Dance Mom” to shame. The five women never stopped. Even when they sat and cooled things down, they still were in constant motion.
I’ve seen Fifth Harmony twice before. The first time was as an opener for Demi Lovato when no one had really heard of them. They were charming and the songs were fun. But they were still getting a hang of this entertainment thing. They danced but they weren’t really choreographed. They sang and harmonized but there was still a feeling that these were five individuals working together not a “group.”
The next time I saw them, Fifth Harmony had moved up a notch on the bill when they opened for Austin Mahone. Things were starting to gel. Their stage presence was maturing. And fans really loved them.
This tour, everything seems to have fallen in place for them. They are singing well. They have a tight band. And they have the songs that win over the audience.
With its latest release, “24/7” and tour, Fifth Harmony are heading into Destiny’s Child territory.
The opening acts ably set the stage for the headliners.
JoJo, the former teen idol best known for “Too Little Too Late,” now an adult, put on a great set that pleased some of her fans of her earlier material. And she won over some of the younger fans on hand for Fifth Harmony with her newer material.
And the opener Victoria Monet, who has written songs for Fifth Harmony and Ariana Grande, showed great vocal chops and a good deal of energy during her 20 minute set.
I give Fifth Harmony at the Mohegan Sun Arena on July 30 3 ½ out of 4 stars.