by Jeff Niesel
Now that the three brothers are all in their twenties, the Jonas Brothers are at that awkward stage in their career when they’re making the transition from boy band to man band. Their audience, however, still mostly consists of teens and tweens and hasn’t quite grown with them. So what’s a Disney Channel sensation to do? Well, the guys apparently want the best of both worlds, something they made clear during a disjointed show last night at Blossom, which appeared to be about half full. They still want the teen audience but they’re also haphazardly trying for a slightly older demographic, too.
They arrived on stage to the sound of the Lone Ranger theme song that played over the house PA. Assisted by a couple of bouncers who kept the screaming girls at bay, lead singer Joe Jonas made his way through the crowd to the front of the stage and the band launched into the power-pop tune “First Time,” the second single from their forthcoming album V. Material from the new disc was hit-and-miss. “Poms Poms” struck a good groove (and was abetted by a marching band backing track) but “Found” was a rather dull ballad. The guys tried to emphasize the fact that they’re not just a cute teen pop act. But they didn’t seem entirely comfortable taking on a new role. Mid-set, Joe Jonas, who, with his shaved head and white jeans looked like a poor man’s Justin Timberlake, remarked that the moms in the audience were looking pretty good to him. You could practically hear crickets. Nick Jonas explained the band “held nothing back on its new album” and wrote songs that were “more cryptic.” The band then played the simple-minded love song “What Do I Mean to You.” It makes us wonder if he knows what the word “cryptic” means. Because they play their own instruments, the guys might have an advantage over other former teen acts, but that didn’t help Hanson any. Their inability to really embrace any of the hip-hop/dance elements that are popular now also puts them at a disadvantage.
Openers Karmin put on a rousing show that was punctuated by a cover of the Macklemore & Lewis tune “Thrift Store.” They closed their high-energy set with fan favorite “Brokenhearted” and extroverted singer Amy Heidemann, who came off a bit like No Doubt’s Gwen Stefani, confidently strutted the stage to the perky tune and even capably dropped a few rhymes.