Tuesday, July 19, 2005

we'll try it again

Yesterday, I had just about finished my blog entry relating to this past weekend when I had to get off the computer and it was lost.

Anyway, rather than try to rewrite what I penned yesterday, I'll start from scratch. I caught Tears for Fears, Gin Blossoms and Dishwalla on Sunday night at the Pacific Amphitheatre in Costa Mesa. It's an 8,500-seat venue and it was pretty close to capacity. I had seen Tears for Fears before - a decade or so ago at the Universal Amphitheatre - but when it was the version that boasted only Roland Orzabal (so was missing Curt Smith).

This performance, although clocking in at a mere 75 minutes, was so much better than that mid-1990s show. Coming on the heels of last year's "Everybody Loves a Happy Ending" comeback disc, this was a performance that demonstrated Tears for Fears still matters. Indeed, time has only strengthened the craft of some of the duo's best '80s and '90s material. So while the highlight for me was "Call Me Mellow" off the 2004 album, older material such as "Break It Down Again," "Sowing the Seeds of Love" and "Mad World" filled the summer night with a magic that won't be forgotten any time soon.

Like Tonic - who I caught on a bill with Cracker and Hootie & the Blowfish a week ago - I would have ditched Dishwalla and allowed both Tears for Fears and Gin Blossoms to each play a bit more. Gin Blossoms, like the Smithereens, play loose in concert. And like the Smithereens, the style works for them. Songs such as "Until I Fall Away," "Follow You Down," "Allison Road" and "Lost Horizons" continue to sound beautiful in that pop-rock-dipped-in-melancholy kind of way. And just about everyone got to their feet to dance when the band closed with a strong "Hey Jealousy."

2005 is turning out to be a great year for concertgoing.

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