News



12-Jul-10
Concert review: Moody Blues tour stop proves band still has it

DoverPost.com
By Dale-Ann Deffer 

BETHEL, N.Y. — The Moody Blues — part of the British Invasion of rock 'n' roll in the late 1960s — soared back into glory at the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts on Saturday night with a strong set high on classic hits and psychedelic rock.

The sold-out crowd of baby boomers and younger, most of whom were hard-core fans sporting Moody T-shirts and tie-dyed clothes, rose to their feet often during the performance, especially when the Moodies played favorites such as “Tuesday Afternoon,” “Nights in White Satin” and “Question” in a melodic, ethereal interpretative sound.

The modern version of the band features longtime members Justin Hayward on guitar and vocals, John Lodge on bass and Graeme Edge on drums. The three men from Birmingham, England, received boisterous applause when they were announced and walked onto the darkened stage. Physically fit, they looked slim as schoolboys, even though they are all in their 60s.

Several of the beginning songs — which included the opener “The Voice” and “Stepping in a Slide Zone” — received a slow audience reaction. However, it was when the Moodies broke into the strains of the beginning of“Tuesday Afternoon,” written by Hayward off the classic album “Days of Future Passed,” that they had their fans for the rest of the evening.

The album, originally released in 1967 in England, struck a chord five years later upon its release in the United States, spawning “Tuesday Afternoon” and the band’s most well-known song, “Nights in White Satin,” which rose to No. 2 on the U.S. charts in 1972.

The visual effects provided a mystical psychedelic atmospheric blend as steam and fog rose from the stage combining with green, yellow and redbacklighting. Behind the band during several songs, photos of the band intheir early days flashed on the screen to the frantic applause of the spectators.

As for the music, it lived up to the exacting standards that Moody Blues fans expect, with dazzling keyboards, intricate guitars, precise drumming and the classical-sounding strains of the flute.

Hayward, handling most of the lead vocal duties, shined with help from Lodge and two female backup singers. He got the crowd going into a sing-along during “I Know You’re Out There Somewhere,” before they rose to their feet, clapping and swaying to the rhythm.

Both Hayward and Lodge have been prolific songwriters throughout the band’s tenure. That showed in the set list as the Moodies performed hits “Your Wildest Dreams,” “The Story in Your Eyes,” “I’m Just a Singer in a Rock ‘n’ Roll Band” and “Ride My See-Saw.” Lodge also contributed “Isn’t Life Strange?”

Jokingly referring to the 1960s as when the band started out, Hayward said the only important thing back then was “having a car and a guitar.”

However, the Moodies were able to progress and infiltrate their garage-band mentality to eventually pick up some of the Beatles’ sound by blending with classical elements like the London Festival Orchestra. That unique sound reached its peak with “Nights in White Satin.”

The crowd was mesmerized by the band, which played the popular Isle of Wight music festival, an English version of Woodstock.

It was an entrancingevening, the special effects mimicking the London fog in tribute to one of the English bands who contributed a new sound to rock‘n’ roll.

RSS Atom
 Translate: