AMEXUnstaged is brought to you by American Express Canada.
Leave it to Amex Unstaged to figure out how to squeeze planet Earth into Paradise Theater in the Bronx.
When the instantly recognizable Bavarian tones of legendary director Werner Herzog (Grizzly Man, The Wrath of God, Encounters at the End of the World) filled the 83-year-old former movie palace, we knew we were in for something special. As smiling faces flashed on towers of monitors and green lasers criss-crossed above our heads, the first notes of “Runaways” fresh from The Killers’ new album, Battle Born, filled the auditorium.
Then the crowd went crazy, and the whole world got to watch.
American Express Unstaged, the innovative digital live stream series created by American Express in partnership with VEVO and YouTube, brings together the world’s foremost musicians with film’s most influential filmmakers to create unforgettable concert experiences streamed by fans around the world.
Past performances have included heavyweight duos such as Arcade Fire by Terry Gilliam, John Legend & The Roots by Spike Lee, Duran Duran by David Lynch and Jack White by Gary Oldman. Suffice it to say, our expectations were high and Amex (and Werner, and the boys from Sin City) delivered.
The set was tight but explosive. Herzog’s cameras panned across the stage as Brandon Flowers and the band amped up the audience in front of a massive video backdrop flashing a dizzying array of iconic Western imagery. From our perch in the mezzanine, we surveyed the scene below.
Briefly, we wondered why a large black cube seemed to be getting an inordinate amount of attention from the folks on the floor who were passing it from one end to the other. It was one of Herzog’s cameras, capturing the experience from the perspective of a crowd surfing fan.
Beaming the energy of a live rock concert to an online audience is no simple feat, and it takes the commitment of a series like Amex Unstaged and the vision of a director like Werner Herzog to even approach what those who were there experienced. If you missed the live stream, watch the full video here and see just how successful they were. You won’t be disappointed.
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