January 23, 2008
Caught this show at Suncorp Stadium last night. WOW!
Unfortunately, the guys I went with were more interested in boozing it up than catching the show so I missed the first act and the start of Fergie's set. Also, we had crappy seats a football field away from the band (literally) and hence the sound was muddy. Still, it was an amazing show - the big screens help a lot at that point.
Fergie was pretty much how I thought she'd be. I'm really not much into a lot of her music but the girl is a performer. She went through (at least) three incarnations (with a support crew of impressive dancers and musicians to cover for her absence): the Black Eyed Peas Fergie, serious-cred-rock-chick Fergie and then Duchess Fergie. In the middle section she did covers of the Stones, Zepplin and Heart and showed off how incredible her pipes are. She hit all but the very top of "Barracuda" cleanly. Very impressive. BUT note to Fergie: rolling around on the stage and being cutsie doesn't work when the closest audience member is 10m in front of you and most of the crowd loses sight of you - there's no intimacy in stadiums. Her rendition of "Big Girls Don't Cry" (best song of her set) also confirmed that she struggles for pitch on the soft notes at the start - you can hear the Autotune on the recording! Alas, she's not perfect.
The Police showed all of their experience. Very tight, incredible musicality and just enough showmanship to keep the plebs happy - the massive light-show thing helped there, too. With their back-catalog there was never a dull moment in their 1:45 set. They skated across songs and segued others together, extending some of the groovier stuff with instrumentals and crowd call-and-response stuff. The sound was a bummer as some of those classic riffs were rendered almost unrecognisable. The show lacked a little energy to my taste - but then, they are all over 50 ...
Sting was cool and in control for the whole show. Totally polished and professional and didn't miss a note. He wandered all over the stage during the extensive instrumental breaks and made sure the crowd got a great view of what he can do. Not much Jagger-style energy, though.
Andy Summers was much better than any of The Police's recordings reveal. The guy can play and loves to get into the show. Shame the sound muddied his best efforts. Also totally cool.
Stewart Copeland was mind-boggling. One of the great drummers, he played with (somewhat dorky-looking) animal intensity and great finesse on the percussive numbers, leaping from the percussion set-up to his drum kit in a big hurry at one point. Absolutely made the show for this drummer ...
Was it worth $99? I think if it had been a bit more intimate and I could have heard it better it would have been, but the empty seats showed that the promoter over-priced this one, IMHO. I'd have rather seen them at the Boondall Entertainment Centre for the same price ...Posted by Hughie at January 23, 2008 8:45 AM