We The Kings Resume their Reign in Manila
“Every time we come to the Philippines it feels like we’re home.” shared frontman Travis Clark at the beginning of the night. The band is indeed no stranger to the Philippines, with the Art of Tour visit being their third time to play on the Manila stage. The SM Skydome rang with approval as the relatively small yet tightly knit crowd delighted in the statement.
Currently with four albums in their discography, We the Kings had Manila waiting a good two years since their last visit in May of 2012. Unsurprisingly, the punk/powerpop band’s fanbase came in full force to welcome back Travis, Danny, Hunter, Charles, and Coley.
The band began their set with a sampling of most of their albums, opening with Queen of Hearts, Skyway Avenue, and Any Other Way, followed by older favorites We’ll Be A Dream and Whoa.
The bond between the artists and their fans was quickly reignited as if the two years had never passed. Almost halfway through the 18-song set, Travis issued a dance challenge: not to be the best dancers, but to have the most ridiculous moves. While many were hesitant at first, it wasn’t long before the crowd finally gave into becoming a mass of pure flailing, jumping energy.
One of the most memorable moments of the night was when drummer Danny Duncan fell into a steady marching beat and the lights dimmed into complete darkness. “Right now nothing matters, we are all here in this moment.” said Travis as he instructed the crowd to raise up their cellphones – the only source of the light in the room that transformed the Skydome into its own miniature Milky Way. Solemnly, the words of Art of War accompanied the little waving lights.
Prompted by the return of the bright colored lights, We the Kings breezed through an energetic sing-along of Jason Mraz’s I’m Yours, Say You Like Me, and their runaway hit from their first album, Check Yes Juliet. A faux farewell was soon followed by Travis and Coley’s return to the stage to perform the new ballad Sad Song.
“Remember that you are the only reason that we can stand on this stage … You mean the world to us!” was the band’s parting message as they launched into another powerful song from their first album, Stay Young. The crowd mirrored the intensity of the band and wrapped up the night with one final chorus from Check Yes Juliet, artists and fans singing as one solid voice.
While there is much to be said about large-scale shows with multi-million dollar production costs, there is truly nothing quite like an intimate concert with fans that act like a family.
Many thanks to Pulp Live World for bringing We The Kings back to Manila!
By Carla Barretto
Carla Barretto is a busy bee that eats, sleeps, and breathes concerts. When she’s not shooting shows, she’s planning them herself! Her production and multimedia backgrounds blend into this peculiar mademoiselle with a love for live music.
Follow Carla on Twitter @heycarlaaa