Red Hot Chili Peppers Heat up U.S. Bank Stadium

Last updated on April 22nd, 2023 at 07:48 pm

California rock legends the Red Hot Chili Peppers returned to Minneapolis for the first time since 2017. Performing at U.S. Bank Stadium, the group drew a crowd of about 35,000 fans.

Profile shot of Anthony Kiedis holding a microphone and grinning at the crowd.
Red Hot Chili Peppers – U.S. Bank Stadium – Photography by Dylan Novacek

Touring behind their last two 2022 albums, the setlist consisted of their greatest hits with a few new tracks sprinkled in.

A shirtless Flea looks down at his bass fretboard with mouth open and eyebrows furrowed in concentration
Red Hot Chili Peppers – U.S. Bank Stadium – Photography by Dylan Novacek

Given their longevity as a band that debuted in the mid-’80s, it’s about time that the group brought their iconic rock sound to stadiums. The Red Hot Chili Peppers haven’t lost any steam over the years, as they recently came off their most lucrative tour of all time.

Closeup of guitarist John Frusciante singing into a microphone.
Red Hot Chili Peppers – U.S. Bank Stadium – Photography by Dylan Novacek

Kicking off the show strong with an introductory jam session, the group’s chemistry and stage presence enthralled Minnesota’s largest venue. Their setlist cut to the chase as they dove into fan favorites “Dani California” and “Scar Tissue.”

 Anthony Kiedis leans back, holding the microphone low with his left hand, with a serious look on his face.
Red Hot Chili Peppers – U.S. Bank Stadium – Photography by Dylan Novacek

Prior to showtime, I questioned how the band’s performance would translate to a stadium setting. I remained skeptical during the opening acts since the stage was just a simple festival-style setup. But when the Chili Peppers came out, their incredible screens and projections lit up the stadium, reminding me of the visuals at Tool’s 2022 concert.

Flea looks down at his bass as he frets a high note with his left hand.
Red Hot Chili Peppers – U.S. Bank Stadium – Photography by Dylan Novacek

My experience with the show’s sound was positive from my seat near the stage. That said, I heard complaints about audio issues on social media. U.S. Bank Stadium is called “the echo chamber” for a reason, and I am anxious about seeing Taylor Swift and Billy Joel later this year in the nosebleeds.

My only gripe with the show was the venue. Although the stadium is an incredible sight, the 35,000 in attendance and simple stage setup made me wonder if the show would’ve been better suited for Target Field or even Target Center.

King Princess sings into the microphone with her eyes closed while fretting a barre chord on her guitar.
King Princess – U.S. Bank Stadium – Photography by Dylan Novacek

The first act on stage was alternative singer King Princess. The 24-year-old singer-songwriter had incredible charm and a strong stage presence. Her performance was underappreciated, and much of the audience missed out as they filed in late. I’d look forward to seeing her at First Avenue or Palace Theater.

Given this tour and her recent appearance on Saturday Night Live, it’s an understatement to say her star is rising. We’re sure to see a lot more from her in the coming years, and seeing her at this level excites me about the future of the music industry.

Julian Casablancas holds the microphone with two hands while singing, leaning to his right.
The Strokes – U.S. Bank Stadium – Photography by Dylan Novacek

The Strokes are also a supporting act on this tour. As a group with a legacy as strong as the Chili Peppers, many fans expected a performance befitting a co-headliner, and only nine songs left the audience wanting more.

Albert Hammond Jr. looks down at his guitar, wearing a leather jacket and a serious face, on a smoky stage.
The Strokes – U.S. Bank Stadium – Photography by Dylan Novacek

Regardless of their short set, their power and musicianship perfectly fit this tour. I had a blast seeing Albert Hammond Jr. do his thing. I’ve been a big fan since seeing him perform at Palace Theater in 2018.

Overall, this show was an exceptional experience. My personal highlight was witnessing the sheer number of passionate fans that filled U.S. Bank Stadium. The Red Hot Chili Peppers essentially created a cultural movement with their work, and seeing them live was such a whirlwind.

Anthony Kiedis grips the microphone with two hands while singing with intensity.
Red Hot Chili Peppers – U.S. Bank Stadium – Photography by Dylan Novacek

Although they may have fared better in a different venue, you can’t deny the star power and prominence The Red Hot Chili Peppers bring. Their sound speaks for itself, and they’ve proven their staying power as one of rock’s all-time greatest bands.

Written by Dylan Novacek

Photographer, graphic designer, and multimedia storyteller from St. Paul. Most likely listening to CHVRCHES, Of Monsters and Men or Fall Out Boy. Once featured in the New York Times for using the bathroom during Avengers: Endgame.


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