PHOTOS: iHeartRadio Music Festival
The short sets meant performers had no time to ease their way in -- it was pedal to the metal from the get-go for each one, as only Coldplay and former "American Idol" champs Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood even offered a ballad. Each act, regardless of how multifaceted they may be in a concert of their own, was forced to show only one side of their personality, which meant fast and furious in every case. It worked best for Alicia Keys, who opted to embrace a soul matron persona, a mature R&B singer emphasizing themes of perseverance and dedication over party anthems of love ballads.
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Here's the breakdown of Iheartradio's first night, hosted by Ryan Seacrest with Joe Jonas, DJ Elvus Duran and Carrie Underwood introducing acts. In order of appearance:
Black Eyed Peas
Set: "Boom Boom Pow," "Just Can't Get Enough," "Don't Stop the Party," "The Time (Dirty Bit)," "I Gotta Feeling."
Shout outs: A thank you to people supporting them since 1998.
Visuals: Audience was asked to hold up cell phones to illuminate the room; eight dancers.
Performance style: Robotic strutting
Set: "Since U Been Gone," "Walk Away," "Because of You," "Mr. Know It All," "My Life Would Suck Without You"
Shout outs: Coldplay and Jay-Z
Visuals: A lot of bouncing
Performance style: Full-throated anguish.
Set: "Nothin' on You," "Grenade," "Just the Way You Are," Valerie"
Shout outs: Black Eyed Peas, Kelly Clarkson, Amy Winehouse
Visuals: Black and white suits + pompadour = soul singer Jackie Wilson fronting the '70s ska revivalists the Specials.
Performance style: Soul, circa 1961.
Set: "Cowboy Casanova," "Undo It," "Say You Won't," "Last Name," "Before He Cheats"
Shout outs: The entire bill
Visuals: Neon for the opener; interacting with eight-member band.
Performance style: Angry cowgirl with a love for Aerosmith riffs.
Set: "Super Bass" cover
Visuals: Guy and gal seated behind an electric piano.
Performance style: Ironic Vegas lounge act.
Set: "Mountain Song," "Been Caught Stealing," "Irresistible Force," "Stop," "Jane Says"
Shout outs: Las Vegas, 1988
Visuals: Two dancers with stripper moves; green lasers shooting into the deepest reaches of space
Performance style: Prototypical metal-meets-punk.
Set: "Viva La Vida," "Clocks," "Rehab" into "Fix You," "Paradise," "Every Teardrop is a Waterfall"
Shout outs: The club they played on their first visit to Las Vegas. A 3 a.m. set and only two patrons.
Visuals: Swirls beamed on the screen behind the band
Performance style: Twirls from Chris Martin in front of the band
Set: "Ghetto Story," "You Don't Know My Name," "Try Sleeping With a Broken Heart," "Unthinkable (I'm Ready)," "Empire State of Mind," "No One"
Visuals: The band.
Performance style: Mature matron of R&B
Set: "Diamonds from Sierra Leone (Remix)," "U Don't Know," "99 Problems," "I Just Wanna Love U (Give It 2 Me)," "On To The Next One," "Empire State of Mind" with Alicia Keys, "Run This Town," "Dirt Off Your Shoulder," "Izzo (H.O.V.A.)," "Jigga What," "Big Pimpin'," "Public Service Announcement," "Heart of the City (Ain't No Love)," "Encore"
Shout outs: Alicia Keys
Visuals: Occasional pyrotechnics; a six piece band in a single line across the back of the stage
Performance style: Rooted in the '80s - but without the crossed arms acting as punctuation. Lots of stage prowling, hand waving and requests for screams and hands in the air.