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Demi Lovato & Nick Jonas Find Unsteady Footing at Toyota Center

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Demi Lovato, Nick Jonas
Toyota Center
September 9, 2016

Formerly a pair of Disney Channel standouts, Demi Lovato and Nick Jonas have evolved into pop stars. (As is tradition.)

Lovato’s fifth studio album, Confident, is nearly a year old now, and the lead single from Jonas’s third solo outing – “Close” – is still topping radio charts. Both artists are in the process of distancing themselves from their bubblegum pasts and making the case for relevancy in the music world.

So it only made sense for them to combine forces on the Future Now tour, which they brought through Houston’s Toyota Center on Friday evening. After all, they have been supporting each other’s music since 2008, when Lovato opened for the Jonas Brothers' Burning Up tour.

Jonas performed first, racing through a handful of radio hits, forgettable filler and one hilariously endearing track about choosing bacon over a formal relationship. His music was supplemented by dancing, both his own and that of two extras, but his strained voice took center stage, even as fans chanted along in unison.

But it was Lovato’s arrival that drew the crowd into a frenzy. Her entrance prompted more cheering than any of Jonas’s songs had, making it abundantly clear that the Texas-born starlet was the evening’s main event.

Beginning her set with “Confident,” a wonderfully unapologetic anthem about confidence, Lovato got off to a strong start before drifting into the same uninspired territory as Jonas. Her voice, like Jonas’s, just wasn’t as polished as advertised, and the absence of any embellishments to distract fans made that fact even more noticeable.

Jonas and Lovato are clearly talented, but both artists were out of their league Friday evening. The bright lights of the Toyota Center proved to be too much for them, at least at this stage of their careers.

For such an ambitious one-two punch, the Future Now tour was sorely lacking in the frills department. Neither of the headlining acts possessed enough star power to keep the show afloat on their own merits, though the ticket sales might have indicated otherwise.

Lovato and Jonas would do well to take a page out of the pop playbook and incorporate better visuals, a slew of professional dancers or, at the very least, a light show. Otherwise, these two stars' careers will flounder as soon as their fanbases come of age.

SET LIST

Nick Jonas
Levels
Champagne Problems
Touch
Good Thing
The Difference
Bacon
Numb
Chains

Demi Lovato
Confident
Heart Attack
Neon Lights
For You
Body Say
Fix a Heart
Nightingale
Warrior
Lionheart
Stone Cold (feat. Jonas on piano)

Nick Jonas
Chainsaw
Jealous
Close (feat. Lovato)
Demi Lovato:
Skyscraper
Give Your Heart a Break
Cool For The Summer

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