The Smashing Pumpkins’ highly anticipated Shiny and Oh So Bright Tour, which kicked off at Gila River Arena on Thursday, July 12, could be considered a big moment for many fans of the band.
The tour marks the full-time return of guitarist James Iha and drummer Jimmy Chamberlin, reuniting a core fraction of the band’s original lineup for their first tour together since 2000.
Though original bassist D’arcy Wretzky is not involved, Iha, Chamberlin and vocalist/guitarist Billy Corgan appear to be together for the long haul, along with guitarist Jeff Schroeder. The group has even released a new song, “Solara.”
The Glendale show opened with an instrumental lead-in set to a backdrop of imagery from various albums by the band. Then, a lone Corgan emerged from a screen, acoustic guitar in hand, to perform Siamese Dream’s “Disarm.”
The stage then went dark. When the lights returned, the full band had united, launching into a performance of “Rocket.”
The subsequent couple tracks saw the band members take things back to their 1991 debut album, Gish. From that project, they performed “Siva” and “Rhinoceros.”
Scattered throughout the set were an array of cuts spanning their ‘90s run. Fan favorites such as “Zero,” “Soma,” “Tonight, Tonight,” “Cherub Rock” and “1979” were, of course, delivered.
Iha was front and center for a performance of “Blew Away,” which seemed to be a well-received moment among fans. Iha sings lead vocals on this song.
The band even delivered several songs from movie soundtracks. These songs were “Drown” (Singles), “Eye” (Lost Highway) and “The Beginning Is the End Is the Beginning” (Batman and Robin).
Aside from revisiting their revered originals, though, they threw in several covers, such as David Bowie’s “Space Oddity,” Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide” and Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven.”
The show wasn’t just about the music, though. The band’s visual game was top notch, too. Cuts like “Drown” gave way to kaleidoscopic imagery, while Corgan sang “Space Oddity” from atop a large staircase platform, paired with psychedelic, space-themed visuals. Corgan performed Adore’s “For Martha” and “To Sheila” at an elevated piano.
Frequent images referencing the group’s early albums as well as early videos of the band and other unique imagery were displayed throughout the set. Several video interludes gave the band – and fans – quick breathers to prepare for the songs to come.
After several hours of near-nonstop performing, the band concluded with the one-two-three punch of “Today,” “Bullet with Butterfly Wings” and “Muzzle”—but things weren’t over quite yet. After a momentary lapse, they returned to the stage to send fans on their way with an encore performance of “Solara,” followed by a stripped down and unexpected cover of the Dumbo song “Baby Mine.”
Though the band’s three-plus hour, 31-song set could be considered comprehensive, the show made a point to highlight the reunification of Corgan, Iha and Chamberlin. As such, songs from albums like Zeitgeist, Oceania and Monuments to an Elegy were left out, putting the focus instead on the first act of the band’s career.
Space Oddity (David Bowie cover)
The Everlasting Gaze
Stand Inside Your Love
Porcelina of the Vast Oceans
Landslide (Fleetwood Mac cover)
Stairway to Heaven (Led Zeppelin cover)
Try, Try, Try
The Beginning Is the End Is the Beginning
Bullet with Butterfly Wings
Baby Mine (from Dumbo)