Underwood has announced dates at Resorts World Las Vegas through August 2024
Carrie Underwood has a voice that simply will not be contained. And there’s no better place to hear this once-in-generation vocal talent than at her Reflection residency in Las Vegas.
In a 20-song set, the multiple Grammy-winner touches on songs from every album in her career. Beginning with the twangy rocker “Cowboy Casanova” and not letting up through the sassy “Undo It,” the show opens with Underwood’s trademark sassiness.
For Underwood, it doesn’t get more country than “Wasted,” with an extended fiddle break from her excellent player, Jordan Lawson.
Taking the water motifs and the theme of “Reflection” seriously, Underwood emerges from the stage on an Elsa-esque icicle throne. The moving stage pieces give the impression of shards of glass that reflect the many lasers used throughout the show.
The production is calibrated to be tight. Large set pieces are used sparingly, such as on “Two Black Cadillacs” and “Before He Cheats.” Underwood spends a considerable amount of time atop a platform that rises several stories above the stage, giving her an ample view of the crowd, and vice versa. Plus, dancers appear and perform incredible feats that create a stage image for nearly every number.
Carrie Underwood is perhaps the greatest female vocalist in music today, both in range and in technical skill. I hope that if Ms. Underwood reads this, she’ll take what I’m about to say as the compliment it’s intended: She’s an arena country rocker with a voice that’s best enjoyed in a theater setting. Reflection at Resorts World is the best place to hear the raw power of Carrie Underwood’s voice.
Case-in-point: “How Great Thou Art” is a showstopper. It is worth the price of a ticket alone. Her voice soars across octaves and up to the heavens. While seeing Underwood on tour is wonderful (see our previous review of the Denim & Rhinestones Tour) the cavernous sports venues do not do this song the justice it deserves.
Underwood is also a fantastic storyteller, both in song and in the way she structures the Reflection show. After opening with fierceness, Underwood offers a guarded vulnerability in “Drinking Alone” and “Dirty Laundry.” This is followed immediately by what she deems the “Murder Medley.” That itself is followed up by a gospel section. After ridding the baddies across three songs including “Church Bells” and “Blown Away,” she seeks redemption with “Jesus Take The Wheel” and the aforementioned “How Great Thou Art.”
On this night (Dec 6), Underwood added two beautiful renditions of Christmas classics to her gospel section. “O Come All Ye Faithful” and “I’ll Be Home For Christmas,” the latter of which she recorded a duet with archival audio of Elvis Presley singing the tune, at the request of his estate. Vegas shows needing to come in on time, this medley was at the sacrifice of her signature tune “All-American Girl,” rather than a newer disco-esque number “Denim & Rhinestones.” But the crowd didn’t seem to mind, and it was a welcome change of pace to see a superstar change up their residency for the holiday season.
By the time the show–and the idea of Reflection–reached its crescendo with “Something in the Water,” Underwood was belting while standing on a massive rain-soaked rockwall fixture, dancers dancing and climbing all around her. The crowd audibly gasped as it emerged from the ground, and by the end of the song she had become thoroughly soaked. The number is her biggest Christian crossover hit to date and leaves the crowd on an inspirational note.
Underwood told the crowd early in the night that she uses her Vegas show to, “Reflect on some of my favorite songs.” And she did just that in impeccable style, and has become a new Queen of Vegas with this critically-acclaimed show. Reflection is announced through August 2024, but I suspect she’ll keep turning the strip into NashVegas for a long time to come.