Red Hot Chili Peppers live in Auckland - review

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By Kooge

They may look like they're past it, but last night the Red Hot Chili Peppers proved 12,000 Kiwi fans very wrong.

Check out photos from the RHCP gig.

The US rockers (three of which recently turned 50) performed to a sold out Vector Arena with such energy and intensity they would put a band half their age to shame.

Kicking off things with 'Monarchy of Roses', the guys chugged their way through a set list which must've been hard for the band to put together (what with such a huge catalogue of good tunes to choose from). Highlights for me included a dirtier than normal sounding version of 'Around The World', 'Snow (Hey Oh)', 'She's Only 18', 'Throw Away Your Television', a very punching live version of 'Suck My Kiss' and of course the crowd sing-a-long favourite of the night 'By The Way'.

Flea was in fine form, stealing the spotlight most of the time from the rather quiet frontman Anthony Kiedis with his jumping, running around and little speeches between songs preaching "love, kindness and furry animals".

Semi-new Chili Peppers guitarist (and John Frusciante replacement) Josh Klinghoffer helped turn up the energy levels in the room to max with his hair whipping and mad guitar skills.

The stage looked awesome with five video screens (four along the top and a huge one on the bottom) displaying the guys in gritty and sometimes Instagram-esque glory and lighting rigs going all the way up to Vector's ceiling. Not many bands bring over their full setup to NZ (or more realistically can afford to) but when it's done right like the Chili Peppers did last night, it really does put the icing on the cake.

The (surprisingly, mostly young) crowd lapped up every minute of the Chili's, with appreciative applause and yelling that roared and bounced off Vector's walls and ceiling.

The Californian rockers play a second and final NZ show tonight at Vector Arena, tickets still available from Ticketmaster. I highly recommend attending.

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