News Column

J.Lo's Foxwoods show is a dance-tastic time

June 22, 2014

By Kristina Dorsey, The Day, New London, Conn.



June 22--Want the lowdown on the J.Lo concert Saturday at Foxwoods? Here we go ...

So how was it? Jennifer Lopez's show was a dance-tastic time full of fired-up, rave-till-you-drop energy.

Being vocal: The criticism about Lopez's voice is that it's thin and colorless. Which, well, is true. That's mostly how it played out on Saturday, but some exceptions did exist. You never know these days if someone is actually singing live in concert, but I'd wager that Lopez was doing just that on "Never Satisfied." She says it's her favorite new song, and I can see why; its opening bars gave her a chance to show off a bluesy, soulful vocal ability in a way no other song has. She also scored in a sweet a cappella bit with two back-up singers that was pure filigree gorgeousness. Those were the highlights. A low light? Points in "Love Don't Cost a Thing" sounded strained and pinched.

Star power: Even if her singing isn't going to cause Adele to lose sleep, Lopez has got everything else going on: vivacious charisma, frisky songs, and funky dance moves.

Songs, now and then: Lopez just released a new album, "A.K.A.," on Tuesday, and she pulled some of its best singles to perform. "First Love" juices a great groove. "Booty" is a hilariously catchy tune, punctuated by the requisite booty-shaking choreography. Of the older hits, "Let's Get Loud," with its propulsive Latin flavor, popped as the night's biggest party starter. And, of course, "Jenny from the Block" (which Lopez sang while wearing a spangly red New York Yankees hat) remains an earworm par excellence. A slowed-down, almost torch-song version of "If You Had My Love," on the other hand, was an intriguing idea that didn't pan out; its sluggishness drained the song of its power.

Face time: Lopez looks sensational. She's got that whole Benjamin Button, looking-younger-every-year thing going on. She's 44, but her supernaturally fresh and dewy complexion suggest otherwise. All those singers and actresses who go the filler-and-facelift route must find their frozen faces green with envy over Lopez's very real-looking youthful beauty. Her physique is killer, too. Which brings us to ...

Clothes call: ... the costumes. Lopez apparently has a strong prejudice against pants. And why not, if you want to show off gams like that? She segued between various sparkling or fringed or barely-there bodysuits -- including one that recalled her famous green Versace gown from the 2000 Grammys. Coolest trick of the evening was during "Let's Get Loud," when dancers with huge fans, a la Billy Flynn's number in "Chicago," used them to completely hide Lopez for a few seconds ... and then they pulled back the fans to reveal that Lopez had quick-changed from a black bodysuit to a white one.

Setting the stage: The set seemed designed for a bigger venue than at Foxwoods' Grand Theater. Lopez's band was crammed onto the right side of the stage, and a "Hello, Dolly!" sweep of stairs threatened to take up all the space. But the dancers -- eight men, who all had Casper Smart-style shaved heads and waxed chests, and two women -- found room to move.

The price of fame? Lopez didn't have an opening act. Her show ran about an hour and a quarter. As I was walking out afterward, another concert-goer who didn't know I was a reporter started chatting with me and told me he thought it was "ridiculous" that his ticket cost $195 and the show only ran as long as it did. Hey, at least his ticket wasn't the top-tier $325.

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(c)2014 The Day (New London, Conn.)

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Source: Day, The (New London, CT)


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