OK, here's my gasbag review:
in defense of Hellraiser, a couple of moments at least that I thought showed some imagination was his mix of Coming Up
combined with the bass rhythm of Morse Moose and the Grey Goose
. Maybe that is on the CD that was released as well, don’t know, don’t have it, but I thought that was clever (he also threw in some of What’s That You’re Doing
and Temporary Secretary
, actually good picks for club-type mixes, but all he did was stutter them up a bit). IMO he should have done more of the kind of thing that he did with Coming Up
, because the last part of H’s production all just sounded like club beats with no seeming relation to Paul’s music at all, and that’s when it became tedious. Of course, not all Macca’s fans necessarily share his enthusiasm with things like this, but hey, I tried to give it a go. But I’ll tell you, I sure couldn’t believe my ears when a good portion of the crowd started booing, I thought “Uh-oh, this don’t look promising in terms of the rest of the evening, howz Paul gonna take to us now?”
Not to worry though, as soon as he hit the stage, the love feast started, the whole place was up on their feet and singing along with most every of the better known songs all night. As has been previously stated, Paul seemed to be blown away by the relentlessly responsive crowd, and that was a great, great vibe, and it lasted the whole show.
I’ll give the song order and comment as I can remember:
Magical Mystery Tour
Flaming Pie (which I LOVE, and they jammed the hell out of it!)
Jet (Abe was knockin’ me out!)
I’ll Get You (loveitloveitloveit!--made me feel like an early UK fan to hear this one live. Paul intro’d it by saying, “This is a very early song--if you remember this one, you weren’t there!”, lol)
At this point he began to realize that this hyere Philly crowd was a live-wire
. He said “The Philadelphia story continues!....I need to stop a second and take all this in!” to which the crowd began roaring even louder!
Drive My Car (after which he responded to the hysterical applause by stating, “OH, you are a GOOD GROUP!”)
He intro’d “Till There Was You” by saying that the Beatles usually played the R&B clubs, but they needed to have a more “smoochie” number to play when they would get a cabaret gig.
Next Paul introduced Abe, then they launched into “Let Me Roll It”, with Wix playing some mean bluesy organ. But also the crowd sang along on the chorus very LOUDLY, to which afterward Paul responded “I had a feeling we were gonna have a bit of fun tonight!”
Same with the next tune, “Got To Get You Into My Life”, the crowd was belting out the chorus with him. He made gestures as mentioned before, like his hand was burning because as an audience we were just too hot to touch!
Next he intro’d Rusty, and they played “Fine Line”, which didn’t quite solicit the same enthusiasm---but I myself gave rebel yells to every number, and I do love the new CD.
Maybe I’m Amazed---with Rusty doing his usual flawless guitar playing and all of them doing awesome backing vocals. The crowd was immediately back to a high-crazed level.
The Long And Winding Road - yeah, we got that crowd wave working!
Paul talked about falling in the piano pit at a previous show, saying, “The first thing I thought was ‘How deep IS this hole?” Then he intro’d “In Spite Of All The Danger” referring to the first group with John and George that included Colin on drums and Duff on piano, and that Duff was only supposed to keep that first original single they made for a week, but he kept it for 23 years! He had the audience sing a background part in it, which of course was done with typical Philly gusto! No coaxing here!
Next was “I Will”, and the audience even sung along with that, and Paul was digging it!
As he sang “Jenny Wrenn” (I didn’t particularly notice that any folks left to hit the bathroom) I swear I thought he was losing his voice!! But what happened was one of the fans up front held up a banner that said “I love CHAOS”, and Paul just got touched a bit, lost it a bit. After the song he thanked the fan for the message, and said he loves to read those banners, but at the same time they also can cause him to lose his concentration--“I’ll tell myself ‘No, don’t read the banner, remember the song!!” He also mentioned a banner that said, “Even my Mom is a fan!”
After singing “For No One”, he said, “That one was for your Mum!”
Again the crowd heartily joined in singing “Fixing A Hole”, to which Paul responded with “Thank You lovely Philly people!!”
After singing “English Tea” he mentioned putting the word “peradventure” into the lyric and recording it without really knowing what it meant and unsure that it was even a real word! So he later looked it up and was glad it fit!, lol
“I’ll Follow The Sun” elicited more crowd singalong, but it was funny at the end--he would finish it, stop, and re-sing the last 4 measures again--he did it like 3 times, it was goofy!
“Follow Me” was next, really sounded great live, actually reminds me slightly of Crowded House.
He began talking about George, and then said, “You know George, right?” to which all did tribute with a loud moment of applause and cheering---and how together they would practice a little Bach thing (actually the 5th movement of the Suite in E minor for Lute, BWV 996). It was funny because Paul kept screwing it up on the 3rd measure, saying, “I have been known to get this right!”
And then he said, “I took this next song from it,” which was the intro to “Blackbird,” which he began to play, and everybody, AGAIN, sang along!
Then he attempted the Bach thing again, which he still couldn’t get right, and everybody laughed, so he said “I’m going to have to practice this some more!”
Next he played “Eleanor Rigby” on guitar with Wix doing the strings on keyboard and Abe on great backing vocals.
Paul then introduced Wix, calling him their musical director that keeps them in line. Then Wix talked about the instruments he usually plays, but then said, “Sometimes I get to put on THIS,” which was an electric guitar, and he led them into a tremelo intro of “Too Many People.” Rusty of course put the whack on me with his bang-on shreddin’.
They cleverly segued that into “She Came Into The Bathroom Window” to wild applause and more enthusiastic singing along.
Next Paul talked about the recent NASA incident with the technical troubles on board the space station that they had over a number of days. But the morning things got back on track, he played a tape of NASA waking up the astronauts to “Good Day Sunshine, ” which was then performed with the choir, lol, that is, US.
Then Brian was introduced, who said “We can feel that brotherly love here in the City of Brotherly Love tonight!”
The band vocals on “Band On The Run” were just amazing, and of course the crowd went nutty singing the chorus.
I’ve Got A Feeling
Back In The USSR - Paul responded to all our constant enthusiasm with “You are a beautiful gang of people!”
Y’know, I keep reading forum comments where people wish Paul would give “Hey Jude” a rest. I’ve almost agreed with it. Well, slap my head and call me shorty, it warn’t the case in ANY wise here! Here, in fact, seriously, it wasn’t unlike the original televised performance on the David Frost Show, I daresay. You had the bics, the luminous nightsticks, the swayin’ and wavin’ and BOISTEROUS singin’. IT WAS REAL! Mebbe you hadda be there.
Then they closed the show with a rousing “Live And Let Die,” loud bangs and colored torches shooting up! And when the audience wasn’t singing, they were dancin’ and movin’!
The first encore started with “Yesterday,” after which applause Paul again fanned his fingers, stating “Yeah, we felt we were gonna have fun tonight!” and then the joint went crazy with “Get Back” to crazier with “Helter Skelter.” I loved “Please Please Me,” Wix on harmonica again like he did on “I’ll Get You.”
For the last encore they brought out the Magic Piano (yeah, they had a little trouble with it, lol) and played “Let It Be.” Then Paul started thanking all the crews that are involved in, wrapping it by addressing the audience with “But the biggest thanks goes to YOU--”
---From whence they kicked off Sgt. Pepper and The End. As previously stated, Paul led those triplets (2 girls and a boy) on stage and they were each costumed into fairly authentic mini copies of Paul’s satin blue Sgt. Pepper outfit. You could tell Paul was just so jazzed by it.
My seat could be a likely contender for the worst seat in the house. I was at the furthermost of the right side front, which put me behind Paul. I was looking over his shoulder all night. The acoustics were echo-y, certainly not what I’m sure what the frontal seating heard. At first I thought these were seats that shouldn’t have even been sold, but I soon began to appreciate the unique view. I saw what band the saw and probably heard as the band heard. Paul was rarely out of eyeshot, though Rusty and Abe were (except for the screen shots), but I was only about 100 feet from Paul, if that. I really kind of dug his profile from that angle. That, the view of the audience reaction and the woozy sound served to make it all rather surreal, kind of a bonus! So in the end, I dug my seat!