01.22.2008 - 2008-01-22 BRISBANE: Suncorp Stadium / Police still pack a sting...
Police still pack a sting...
The Police were an unusual mix: brilliant musicians who also knew how to construct concise, timeless pop-rock tunes, pumped up with some punk-inspired energy and danceable reggae rhythms.
Just how timeless those songs were was apparent at last night's Suncorp Stadium show, the opening night of the Australian leg of their globe-girdling reunion tour.
It was their first Brisbane appearance since they played Festival Hall almost 27 years ago, when at the height of their success.
Things have certainly changed since then. It certainly didn't cost $99 to get in, the cheapest ticket last night, and there were no huge video screens. This reviewer was at the 1981 show, and what sticks clearly in the mind is what a massive sound they created with just three guys.
That is still a major part of the attraction, with guitarist Andy Summers, now 65, and drummer Stewart Copeland, 55, creating the complex rhythms which colour the infectious melodies delivered by Sting, 56. No added players, back up singers or the like - just three men creating a mountain of sound.
How would the crowd of about 30,000, now older and wiser, react? Straight to their feet with the opening notes of 'Message In A Bottle', and there they remained for the rest of the show.
The set featured a balance of the mega hits from 'Walking On The Moon', to 'Don't Stand So Close To Me' and 'Roxanne', while album tracks like 'Synchronicity II', which gives the chance for them to spread their musical wings.
If ever a band was primed for a return to the stage it's The Police, looking fit and lean and with Sting sporting a new beard. He says he grew it to fit in while on holiday in Byron.
His vocal power and range is as strong as ever while Copeland is a show in himself, pushing the band forward with a jaw-dropping display of virtuosity, energy and athleticism.
Sure there's a lot of reunion shows about, but this was certainly one that rocked as hard and was as much fun as the first time around.
© The Courier Mail by Noel Mengel