Goin’ Your Way
A few thousand lucky punters saw this gig as it was happening – in the same room; hundreds of thousands watched it online, streaming the event live, catching it after and now the definitive record of the event is available; a double-CD+DVD. And it’s good. Really good. I’ve seen Neil Finn live – in a few different guises and I’ve seen Paul Kelly perform solo and with band on several occasions; neither of them has ever let me down. You get a selection of the hits and some of the new material from the time and there’s an intensity to the performance, both were born for the stage, or born on the stage even, as both have been doing this as their main job for all of their adult life, growing up on the stage.
And they’ve worked together too – in that Paul Kelly toured America with Crowded House, Kelly had even been known to throw in a version of Into Temptation as part of his sets.
It made a lot of sense that these two would share the stage in this way. And it’s a relaxed run through of the hits. Plenty of energy though, the band pushes old chestnuts like Dumb Things and Distant Sun along, Kelly shows that the songs from his latest album are worthy of the “hits” from his catalogue. And Finn reminds that songs like Message To My Girl have endured/will endure alongside any of the best (other) Enz and House material.
Neil Finn’s gift for a melodic hook, an instantly hummable chorus is obvious and to hear so many of those great tracks here lined up is to forgive him for some of the recent indulgences; the man still knows his way around a pop song and he’s written so many great ones.
Paul Kelly’s gift is in the storytelling: Leaps And Bounds, Deeper Water, How To Make Gravy, Winter Coat, To Her Door – they’re all in the A Team. And sharing the bench for that stacked act is Only Talking Sense, Into Temptation, Four Seasons In One Day, Private Universe, Better Be Home Soon, Don’t Dream It’s Over…
This concert event was a family affair too, regular helpers to the respective stars are Paul’s nephew Dan on guitar and Neil’s son Elroy on drums; both great musicians in their own right with several projects on the go outside of assisting their famous older family members.
You could claim to be sick of these songs, to be done with them, over them, but hearing them all lined up like this – played with such conviction – well, it’s easy to be turned back on to it all. Once again.