Music

Concert Review/Photos: “Weird Al” Yankovic @ Mann 7/31

Please note: This article is published as an archive copy from Philadelphia City Paper. My City Paper is not affiliated with Philadelphia City Paper. Philadelphia City Paper was an alternative weekly newspaper in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The last edition was published on October 8, 2015.

That “Weird Al” Yankovic’s head-first silliness translates so well to a live arena is a testament to his singular force as the go-to humor rocker of the last 30+ years.


That “Weird Al” Yankovic’s head-first silliness translates so well to a live arena is a testament to his singular force as the go-to humor rocker of the last 30+ years.

Playing behind his 2014 Mandatory Fun album, Yankovic spared no expense in his spin on pop. Beginning the first song of the night (“Tacky,” a play on Pharrell Williams’ “Happy”) in his dressing room and walking through common areas outside of Mann’s seating area and onto the stage, he knew how to get the crowd riled up. Other highlights from Mandatory Fun included “Word Crimes,” an ingenious take on Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” and “First World Problems.”

The crowd certainly was most engaged with his hits, which, like the aforementioned songs, often came with elaborate costume changes. For “Fat” he donned a fat suit, an Amish get-up “Amish Paradise.” The latter got the crowd to wave their arms and was one of the highlights of the night.

When costume changes were occurring, we watched clip compilations either starring or referencing Yankovic. Some were a little long — especially the mockery of the 2014 film Whiplash with Yankovic playing accordion to J.K. Simonns’ gruff music teacher — these segments reminded the crowd what they already knew: Yankovic is a cultural heavyweight. Though it was cool to certainly see snippets from videos like “Eat It” on the big screen with some great sound.

Other highlights of the evening included a raucous “Smells Like Nirvana,” the acoustic medley that included “Eat It” and the Star Wars ending of “The Saga Begins” and “Yoda.”

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