KROQ's Absolut Almost Acoustic Christmas

Smashing Pumpkins Headlines Night One of KROQ's Absolut Almost Acoustic Christmas

Night One of KROQ's Absolut Almost Acoustic Christmas at the Forum in Inglewood, CA treated concert goers to pure bliss of rock & roll. The 29th edition of the annual 2-night concert featured performances by Smashing Pumpkins, Thirty Seconds To Mars, Third Eye Blind, Greta Van Fleet, Bad Religion, AFI, The Interrupters, AJR and Badflower.

Interestingly, half of the bands playing the first night have roots in SoCal. Badflower, Bad Religion, The Interrupters and Thirty Seconds to Mars all formed and reside in Los Angeles. It was sweet to hear the bands give shout out to KROQ for being one of the first stations to play their music.

Badflower, AJR and The Interrupters got the festivities started. These newcomers all have had big radio breakout songs this year. Rock outfit Badflower recently signed with Bad Machine/John Vartos label and released "Ghost." Indie pop act AJR got their huge break when they collabed with Rivers Cuomo from Weezer for the single "Sober Up." While, ska rockers The Interrupters have been heating up the charts the past few months with "She's Kerosene."

AFI, Bad Religion, Greta Van Fleet, Third Eye Blind lead the night after that. Greta Van Fleet were one of the youngest performers of the night and one of the most anticipated acts of the night. Their set started with frontman Josh Kiszka throwing white roses into the crowd and, as a band, showed that the youth are still attuned to classic rock and roll.

For the second year in a row, Thirty Seconds to Mars performed at KROQ's Absolut Almost Acoustic Christmas. Dressed to impress with a full length fur coat, bedazzled yellow gloves and those signature sunglasses frontman Jared Leto channeled his rockstar persona. Performing all their hit's including favorites "Walk on Water" and "The Kill," Thirty Seconds to Mars deserved the nod for most fun of the night as they released huge balloons into the crowd and invited fans up on stage for a sing along.

The night ended with a classic one hour set by Smashing Pumpkins which included hits "Today," "1979" and a cover of The Cures "Friday I'm in Love." The most powerful moment of the set was Billy Corgan discussing the fires that  hit Malibu, and how former touring keyboardist Mike Garson lost his home and studio. Corgan then invited Garson onstage for a rendition of “Disarm” with Garson playing piano.The loss of the fires played a huge part of the night since portion of the money raised from the show went to the Red Cross to help with victims of the fire. The rest of the proceeds from the event benefit Para Los Niños and the Al Wooten Jr. Heritage Center.

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