Monday, February 19, 2001 Volume 66, Issue 99



Destinyis Child brings down the house

By Jake McKim
Daily Cougar Staff

The piercing screams rained down Sunday, shattering eardrums and causing the ecstatic crowd to, well, lose it. It wasnit the Backstreet Boys or ‘NSync making the young-for-rodeo-standards audience go nuts; this multi-platinum act was none other than Houstonis own Destinyis Child.

Just prior to the hit-after-hit trio hitting the stage, a group of over 200 lucky teenagers was brought out like wild cattle to witness the show stageside. Beyonce Knowles, Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams came out of the gate strong, mixing older hits ("So Good," "No, No, No") with their newer, fresher material ("Say My Name," "Bug-A-Boo").

The groupis diverse, pop-friendly sound was infectious, sending fans who seemed to hang on to every word, every dance step the group members performed, into a frenzy. "Itis such a blessing to be on this stage, Houston," Knowles said.

The energy remained throughout as Destinyis Child blazed through its catchy, radio-dominating music a la "Independent Women" and "Jumpini, Jumpini."

"We want you to get out of your seat and get your rodeo on," Knowles told the adoring crowd.

The group even managed to roll out the title track to its coming album, Survivor, which will be released in May.

The aggressive, rock-driven single is undoubtedly the girlsi next surefire hit. In the song, Knowles rages at ex-boyfriends, letting them know that sheis doing just fine without them, thank you very much.

The beauty of a group like Destinyis Child is that it can preach a ladies-first, pro-feminism message without turning off its male listeners. What other group could get away with telling men to "pay their bills" without being hated by the male population?

Another aspect of the groupis success lies in that it can present a sexy stage presence, yet manage to maintain a squeaky-clean image that wonit send parents scrambling for the "off" switch.

The girls even threw in a short a cappella rendition of "Jesus Loves Me," for a time focusing the showis emphasis onto God.

Backed by an impressive band and four dancers, the stage was always occupied, throwing visual stimulation into the mix.

The 13-song, one-hour-and-50-minute set featured two costume changes and several call-and-response chants.

In an odd twist for an otherwise unblemished set, the group was forced by Pay-Per-View into an extended show that dragged on for far too long. Most of the capacity crowd headed for the exits while the group repeated song after song.

It was difficult to determine who was more tired of the groupis songs by showis end, Destinyis Child or the few fans who remained.

Eliminate this misstep and youire left with, at least until this point, the best show of this yearis rodeo.

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