Believe it or not, the art of power balladry was actually pioneered without any irony whatsoever. The formula included heavy power chords, a slow tempo played on acoustic guitars, and soaring choruses during which the muted percussion would rise for dramatic effect. Bands such as Tenacious D and the Eagles of Death Metal put figurative little air quotes around their power ballads. But REO Speedwagon doesn't get the irony: "Keep on Loving You," "Can't Fight This Feeling" and "Take It on the Run" were hewn from the kind of towering sincerity that once made FM radio great. The band plays tonight at 8 at the Ameristar Casino's Star Pavilion (3200 North Ameristar Drive). Tickets cost $60 to $80. Call 877-414-7000.
REO Speedwagon Fri., May 9, 8 p.m., 2008