It has taken me a few days to get back into a positive mindset following the sad and shocking Chester Bennington news last week, but as always, music and photography have been there to keep my mind occupied.
A couple weeks ago, I finally caught Incubus for the first time. They caught me by surprise back in February with the drop of a new single. With six years between albums, I wasn’t expecting to hear anything new from them. After giving “Nimble Bastard” a listen, the first thing I said was, “Yup! Still sounds like Incubus!” Actually, I really liked the song and I was excited to hear something that sounded familiar even though it was fresh.
Incubus has been one of those elusive bands for me. They’ve been on my “want to see” list for years and years, but somehow every time they come near me, I can’t make it. When the 8 Tour was announced, I was determined to not miss out this time. Thankfully, I now have Incubus concert photos to prove it!
In terms of music photography, this show was a little atypical. Most shows follow the generic “first three songs, no flash” rule, however Incubus was songs 4, 5 and 6. No complaints here – the photographers huddled at the side lines until the end of the third song which, coincidentally, was “Nimble Bastard.”
I made my way into the photo pit and “Anna Molly” came on as song #4. Again, I was caught by surprise. A digital backdrop, the perfect amount of light smoke, blue and purple lights and balanced front light… the production of this tour is beautiful from both a photographer and fan perspective.
I loved how much Brandon Boyd (vocalist) smiled – like this was genuinely his happy place. Of course, I couldn’t help but smile too, finally getting to hear some of my 15(!!!) year old favorites (“Drive,” “Wish You Were Here”). Although I had listened to it before, the live rendering of “State of the Art” also caught my ear. The emotion and emphasis seemed perfectly in synch with the feeling of nostalgia I had for most of the evening.
Of the three songs we photographed, “Megalomaniac” was the last and easily the one I knew the best. The served as a reminder to myself of my own tip about learning the band and their music before I shoot. Looking at the shot above puts me straight back at the show, hearing Brandon yell, “Hey, Mega-looo-maniac!”
Prior to every show, I do some amount of research. Scrolling through Instagram, I found a photo of Brandon with his shirt up over his head. Although I had no idea which song it would happen during, I did keep an extra eye out for that moment… and, well…