At the end of June, former Disney stars Demi Lovato and Nick Jonas kicked off their co-headlining tour, “Future Now Tour.” Since beginning their tour, the duo has been traveling and performing all around the United States and Canada. They plan to finish off the tour in mid-October with 3 concerts scheduled in Mexico.
On Wednesday, August 24th the “Future Now Tour” stopped by Vancouver, where Demi and Nick took the stage at Rogers Arena. Fortunately, being out of university for the summer, I was able to drag a friend along and check the show out!
[springboard type=”video” id=”1650609″ player=”mtvt006″ width=”480″ height=”400″ ]
Admittedly, I am not a huge fan of Demi’s, but Nick’s co-headlining status was enough to convince me to go. In addition, it is undeniable that Demi has some of the strongest vocals (if not the strongest) out of all of the musical starlets who came out of the Disney machine.
Singer, songwriter Mike Posner was the opening act for the night. However, he apparently took the stage fairly early (sometime around 7 pm) and therefore, I wound up getting to the venue shortly after he wrapped up his set. It was about an hour later, at 8 pm, when Nick took the stage and right away began singing some of his biggest hits.
For the most part, Nick strayed away from singing any of the lesser-known songs from his last 2 solo albums. He belted out songs such as “Levels,” “Good Thing,” and “Chains” – all of which are songs that most people have heard on the radio before. However, he did sneak in a few songs from his album Last Year Was Complicated (i.e. “Touch,” “The Difference”) that were obviously not as familiar (if at all) to audience members. As a fan of Nick’s (this was the fourth time I have seen him in concert, but first time as a solo artist), I was a bit disappointed that he stuck with his hits, as I was hoping he would throw in some of the hidden gems from both Last Year Was Complicated and 2014’s Nick Jonas. However, judging by the attire of the audience, it appeared that more people were attending the concert for Demi – thus, it was probably a smart on his part to sing songs that were popular amongst the general public and not just his fans. In terms of his vocals, he did not disappoint. He was able to hit the high notes, low notes and all those in between while pulling off a few dance moves on stage. While he still is no Justin Timberlake when it comes to dancing, he has certainly come a far way since his Jonas Brothers days. Nevertheless, he has some work ahead of him when it comes to being a solo act and interacting with the fans. However, I have to give him some slack, as he was part of a three-man show for the majority of his life (with his brother Joe always taking center stage).
With an opening by Nick and a few other appearances by him dispersed throughout the set, it definitely felt as though the concert was mainly Demi’s. With the radio advertising that’s surrounding the tour, which is primarily focused on hyping Demi’s appearance, this wasn’t all too surprising – although I was secretly hoping that Nick would be able to get some more stage time. Whether you are a fan of Demi and/or her music or not, there is one thing for sure: the girl can sing. She effortlessly belted out her powerhouse hits, such as: “Skyscraper”, “Neon Lights,” “Stone Cold,” and “Confident.” In addition, she also helped take over for Tove Lo on Nick’s collaborative hit song “Close.” Like Nick, Demi did not do much interacting with the audience, although she did make the obligatory statement of claiming Vancouver is one of her favourite cities. She also mentioned a brief little quip about mental health and being able to seek help when in-need (referring to her past eating disorder and substance abuse issues).
Leaving the show, I couldn’t help but compare Nick and Demi’s concert to that of their former Disney counterpart Miley Cyrus. Back in 2014, I attended the Vancouver stop of Miley’s “Bangerz Tour.” While there was nothing to complain about when it came to Nick and Demi’s vocals, their energy was notably lower than that of Miley (which is somewhat predictable based on their contrasting public images). I looked around several times and was actually shocked at how still the audience members were in comparison to the crazy party that was going on during Miley’s show. Although I don’t expect Nick and Demi to come out on stage singing atop a rhinestone encrusted car anytime soon (which Miley did, btw), they definitely could use some embellishment in both their stage presence and the actual stage design itself (Nick and Demi just sang in front of a screen that changed colours from time to time). In addition, the thing I particularly liked about Miley’s concert was that she really flushed out the songs on her album Bangerz. On the other hand, Demi and Nick’s set was pretty much all radio hits (which, let’s face it, have been overplayed at this point). Another big aspect that set Miley’s concert apart was the audience demographic. I was surprised by how young (I’m talking 6-12 year olds) Demi and Nick’s crowd was, despite the fact that both singers are clearly trying to mature their image. I guess Miley’s wild public antics were, at the very least, effective in changing up her fan base (as many of her concert-goers were 16+).
Nonetheless, I did enjoy the concert, however, it was not an event that had me gushing about how good it was to everyone I subsequently ran into. Although I am biased, I truly believe that Nick has plenty of potential to push himself even further when it comes to owning the stage. While Demi has had years of being a solo artist, Nick is still relatively new to the scene. I am hoping that next time Nick is in town he will be headlining his own show and will be able to explore his own creative pursuits more. This time around it felt that he was letting Demi shine, thinking that he wasn’t the true star of the show. However, I think with the success he continues to have; he will soon realize otherwise.
Nick is more than ready to branch out on his own and break free from his Disney roots. The “Future Now Tour” feels like it is a transition point for Nick, as he embraces his inner unleashed talent and charisma. Demi can continue to do her thing, as long as she is okay with the average age of her audience being 8 years old. Otherwise, she may need to call up her old pal Miley for some tips on how to dramatically shake things up.