“Welcome to the 2012 Own The Night World Tour,” Lady Antebellum’s Charles Kelley said during the group’s first of two sold-out performances at Radio City Music Hall in New York last night (May 3). “We’ve dreamed about this night for quite some time.”
It was a sentiment each of his band members shared. And their set didn’t disappoint.
The country trio kicked off their show with the fitting “We Owned the Night” as a montage of photos appeared behind them. The energetic concert anthem “Stars Tonight” followed while previous single “Our Kind of Love” continued the intensity with an impressive guitar breakdown mid-song.
Throughout their 90-minute set, Lady Antebellum segued effortlessly from emotional ballads to livelier tunes. All the while, the band showcased exactly why they’re one of music’s most talked about groups.
“This is our first show back in about a month,” Hillary Scott informed the crowd. “We had to take a break for Dave to get married. Marriage is looking good on you!” she added.
Dave Haywood isn’t the only newlywed. Hillary married in January, and her husband is now the drummer of the group. During the more intimate “Just A Kiss,” as Hillary and Charles swapped vocals and stared longingly at each other – a gesture that had many fans curious about their relationship in the past – Charles joked, “Hillary, I think your husband might be a little jealous.”
The band’s angst-filled first single “Love Don’t Live Here” saw Charles jump into the crowd and share a beer with a fan. Later, Lady Antebellum dedicated the more sentimental “Hello World” to a couple who tried to see them perform in London but got stuck in the airport. The poignant track was the most stripped down of the night, with Dave alone on piano and vocalists Charles and Hillary sharing harmonies.
The remainder of their set included a slew of hits from each of their three albums as well as a jam band-styled number where both openers Thompson Square and Darius Rucker took the stage. They covered the Doobie Brothers song “Black Water” and the Allman Brothers Band’s “Midnight Rider.”
As the night drew to a close and the encore was imminent, there was only one way Lady A could end their set: “Need You Now.” Their genre-crossing, GRAMMY-winning single had all music fans singing along — and many surely questioning whether or not, when they got home, they should “reach for the phone” at “a quarter after one.”
With slow strokes of the piano introducing their last song of the night, their dynamic performance left concertgoers buzzing all the way home.
– Annie Reuter, CBS Local