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The Smashing Pumpkins perform on Friday, Aug. 17 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.Zac Steger
For longtime fans of the Smashing Pumpkins, Friday night’s show at Bankers Life Fieldhouse was somewhat of a dream come true.
It’s been years since frontman Billy Corgan, guitarist James Iha, and drummer Jimmy Chamberlain were together blowing roofs off of arenas. The Smashing Pumpkins’ story is one that’s full of turmoil, as Iha and Chamberlain have both come and gone over the years.
Friday night’s show was certainly not the ideal reunion either, as founding bassist D’arcy Wretzky (who was supposedly asked multiple times to return to the Pumpkins) was not in attendance, instead being replaced by bassist Jack Bates (son of Peter Hook of Joy Division and New Order). Regardless, the show was certainly a move in the right direction, and it certainly rocked too.
One of many stadium stops on the “Shiny and Oh So Bright” tour, Friday’s Smashing Pumpkins’ performance lived up to the reunion tour’s namesake. Over the course of the night, Corgan and Iha ripped through classics from their first five albums, also receiving help from fellow guitarist Jeff Shroeder. The band’s lighting and visual presentation (dreamed up by Corgan himself) was also elaborately stunning, making for an experience that had longtime fans pinching themselves time and time again throughout the evening.