Lady Gaga at US Airways Center Last Night (+ VIDEO)

Lady Gaga
May 26, 2011

For fans who were seeing Lady Gaga's Monster Ball a second time last night, they definitely got a little something new.

She closed out the show with a "Born This Way" performance reminiscent of her spot on the Grammys. She also performed a stripped-down version of the song, and if she has it her way, the single will stay at number one many more weeks than the six it's already spent at the top of the charts.

Being the brilliant marketer she is, Gaga dropped the phrase "born this way" as many times as she could throughout the show, making sure that anyone who hasn't purchased the single yet would not forget its name any time soon.

​If Gaga is sick of this tour she's been on for the past year-and-a-half, there wasn't much indication of that at last night's show. She sounded the best I've ever heard her live and looked great, too--she seemed to be very well-rested.

It was impressive to see her put her all into the performance yet again, acting as if it was opening night all over again though the set, though costumes and in-between song banter haven't changed since she last came through. She still did the whole, "I hate the truth" puzzling monologue, she bit off the head of yet another Barbie, and she still asked the audience if they loved her. Let's hope she gets rid of that stuff for next time.

Gaga did manage to keep it fresh with great crowd interaction during the show, though she also used it to fuel her brand. Coincidentally, someone happened to throw a bandana on the stage that read "Born this way," which Gaga proudly donned, and she even put on a happy birthday hat from a fan, since she'll be turning 25 on March 28.

​The definite highlight of the show, besides the energetic encore that got everyone on their feet, was when Gaga sat (and, at times, stood) at the piano. The slowed-down version of "Born This Way" is absolutely beautiful (and kind of makes you forget she may have plagiarized it).

Even if you're bored to death of Gaga, you've still got to admire her charity work. She announced several partnerships throughout the show, including one that benefits homeless youth from sales of one of her remixes.

It's probably safe to say many of the fans at the show were repeat Gaga concert attendees, but they still put their paws up and danced excitedly. If she wanted to do the same tour for another year-and-a-half, she could probably get away with it, though with a new album due in May, there's life after the the Ball.

Critic's Notebook:

Personal Bias: Lady Gaga is one of my favorite artists. This was my third time seeing her.
The Crowd: There was a lot of diversity in the crowd--all ages and, obviously, sexual orientations. Young women dominated the audience, though.
Overheard in the crowd: "I like how she announced she never lip syncs," from my mom.
Random Notebook Dump: If you're going to go a concert, please don't tell the people in front of you to sit down. Concerts are meant for dancing, people.
Set List:
"Dance in the Dark"
"Glitter and Grease"
"Just Dance"
Beautiful, Dirty, Rich"
"The Fame"
"Boys Boys Boys"
"Money Honey"
"Born This Way (on piano)"
"You and I"
"Poker Face"
"Paparazzi "
"Bad Romance"
"Born This Way"

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Nicki Escudero
Contact: Nicki Escudero