Last Night: Pink and The Ting Tings at American Airlines Center

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Pink, The Ting Tings
American Airlines Center
September 24, 2009

Better than: Lions, tigers, and cotton candy under the big top.

Rachel Parker
For more pictures from last night's show, check out the slideshow.

The Ting Tings

got things started promptly last night, as a sprightly Kate White bounded onto the stage for "Great DJ."

Despite the usually tepid response opening acts receive, this duo got a warm welcome from the very start of a set that included "Keep Your Head," "We've Started Nothing," and, of course, "That's Not My Name." But it was a riffing, pounding rendition of "Shut Up and Let Me Go" that served as the highlight of the band's set. In fact, during that song, White beat the bass drum until it fell off the stand--and when she couldn't recover it, she tossed the beater and shouted, "Cowbell!" and began tapping out the rest of the melody.

As the lights dimmed for Pink, her shirtless hypeman skulked the stage, urging the crowd to get louder.

He then cranked a giant jack in the box and the star of the show emerged from under the catwalk, suspended by cables. The curtain dropped to reveal an LDC screen that mimicked fun house mirrors, and the entire set looked like the front of a vintage fun house.

With every hit Pink performed, the crowd exploded and sang along; "Who Knew," "Please Don't Leave Me," "U + Ur Hand" kept the entire house on their feet. "So What" heralded her underwear-clad idancers into a pillow fight (complete with flying feathers) atop a giant bed (It ended with a male performer tied to the bed in his underwear and Pink crouching over him victoriously).

After several costume changes, a barefoot Pink settled in jeans and a tank, holding an acoustic guitar. She acknowledged the thousand U.S. troops in attendance before playing "I Don't Believe You" and "Dear Mr. President." As the musicians gathered in a semicircle, she said it was her pretend campfire.

Slowly getting things back into party mode, she changed into her outfit from the MTV Video Music Awards to perform "Sober." Alas, a recently separated shoulder prevented her from doing the trapeze act that caught so much attention at that awards show. Still, there were other visual treats: After a little "Bohemian Rhapsody," two huge, inflatable and sinister-looking clowns formed near the top of the set, and the dancers bounced them back and forth to the beat of "Funhouse."

And, just when you thought things couldn't get more dramatic, she closed the show with "Get This Party Started" and four dancers revealed that they were also aerialists. The bravest of them all dangled above the catwalk and bungee-dropped head first toward the stage in an explosion of confetti.

As the band drew out the final notes of the song, it became clear: The Ringling Brothers aint got shit on Pink.

Critic's Notebook
Personal Bias:
I love the circus, so this whole theme deeply resonated with me.

Random Note: There were a bunch of groups obviously having girls-night-out at this show.

By The Way: Pink sang "I Touch Myself" atop a red chaise that allowed for phantom hands to pop up and caress her.

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