Thursday, July 28, 2011

Paul in Montreal (7/26 and 7/27)

From The Montreal Gazette.

Night one:
McCartney’s band has been working with him for 10 years – longer than the Beatles (at least with Ringo Starr) were together. Bassist Brian Ray, guitarist Rusty Anderson, drummer Abe Loboriel, Jr., and keyboard player Paul “Wix” Wickens are as comfortable rocking up Birthday and Back In the U.S.S.R as they are providing the wordless, note-perfect harmonies in Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five or the Frere Jacques background vocals in Paperback Writer. And never do they stray far from the studio recordings. I’m Looking Through You, for example, sounded almost as sweet and breezy as its Rubber Soul source.

Night two:
But the second show was more satisfying for me because it was my good fortune to see it almost like a fan, without deadline worries, constant note-taking or non-stop thinking about what needed to be mentioned in the review. During Live and Let Die, I even allowed myself the luxury of a weird hallucinatory take on the stage action. As fireworks went off al over the place and plumes of fire shot up in front and back of the stage, a grinning McCartney looked as if he was gleefully playing through the apocalypse.

And the image made a lot of sense. There are many who find themselves in times of trouble and discover that it`s not Mother Mary, but Father McCartney – that was to be the priest`s name in Eleanor Rigby – who brings, if not the words of wisdom, then the notes that soothe their soul. It`s been a constant comfort for many in crisis. You can ask the 34,000 people who sang, shouted, clapped, beamed and cried their way through a pair of three-hour sets over the two nights.

No comments: