Neil Finn, gig review: 'He never really takes off
St James’s Church, London
Thursday 28 November 2013
“You can turn to page 54 and psalm 57,” the 55-year-old quips before his “whimsical” new track, “Recluse”, on which he maintains “It's people you lose when you become a recluse”. It's sort of part of the recluse deal, really.
“This is an extremely special occasion,” the Crowded House frontman informs us and the singer keeps on insisting there's no better place to be than in this church tonight. It's disputable. The first half of the set is devoted to his introspective new solo album, Dizzy Heights, on which he's assisted by a nine-piece ensemble. Finn's high falsetto (not dissimilar to Jimmy Nail's) delivery is overwrought but the lyrics, in the main, are rather banal and the tempo plodding, particular on “Impressions”.
The looser (“I don't know what I'm playing from here on in”) second half is an improvement with Finn demonstrating his nimble lyricism and knack for a melody (when he's at his best his recalls Glenn Tilbrook and Squeeze) on Crowded House gems “Into Temptation” and the evocative “Distant Sun”.
His adoring crowd, who yelp out requests and in one case belt out the first few notes of “Blue Hotel”, seem satisfied. But as splendid a musician as the New Zealander is, this experience never really takes off.
Review: Imaginative storytelling returns with vigourfilm
Bannatyne leaves Dragon's DenTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Game of Thrones author George RR Martin says 'f*** you' to fans who fear he will die before finishing Westeros saga
- 2 PornHub begs users to stop uploading video clips of Brazil getting beaten 7-1
- 3 Why I'm on the brink of burning my Israeli passport
- 4 L'Oreal cuts ties with Belgium supporter Axelle Despiegelaere after hunting trip photographs
- 5 The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week
Sustained immigration has not harmed Britons' employment, say government advisers
7/7 memorial defaced on anniversary of 2005 attacks with ‘Blair lied thousands died’ graffiti
Australia facing international condemnation after turning around Sri Lankans at sea
War is war: Why I stand with Israel
Even when it brutalises one of its own teenage citizens, America is helpless against Israel
Socialist Worker called to apologise over ‘vile’ article saying Eton schoolboy Horatio Chapple's death is ‘reason to save the polar bears’