13 September 2013, Stuart @ 8:40 am
Disc 1 (66:46)
Disc 2 (64:11)
Disc 3 (31:18)
Paul McCartney – Vocals, Bass, Guitar,Piano Rusty Anderson – Guitar, Backing Vocals
In his youth, writing “When I’m Sixty-Four” in the parlour of his dads home on Forthlin Ave, Liverpool that year of his dotage must have seemed an age away. Imagining being sat in a bath chair, tartan blanket tucked around his knees, toothless, hairless, thoughts of any fame that he might have had around the small club circuit in his home town but a warm memory. Now in his 71st year the older, wiser, streamlined McCartney still finds himself on the crest of a wave. He’s happy no doubt – having a personal fortune that shadows most magnates on writing ditties and owning show tunes alone, recently married to a lady who rather than fighting for her own causes as vocally as the last one, shuns the limelight as a standard and a young daughter who must bring the sun to his life.
Paul’s latest tour, essentially a never-ending continuation of his 2001 – 2002 “Back In The U.S.” jaunt, entitled “Out There!” – a wry title that comically alludes to a rather psychedelic past rolled on through 2013 visiting another surfeit of as previously un-visited countries or cities.
As least Macca has the want or need to change up his set lists as he rumbles around. It might be true that his rehearsals feature an almost mind boggling array of rarities but inbetweemn keeping the devoted few happy he still tries to mix things around as much as possible from a catalogue that, while hardly obscure, still has it’s lions share of unpracticed tracks. Paul has every resin to be proud of his Beatles heritage but tonight he tries to exemplify on his Wings material first – obviously down to the grand re-issue series of his ‘solo’ back catalogue but in someways catching up with the fan who may have complained of a circular set list.
The show at Boston’s Fenway Park that the No label group kindly present here is a very clear if slightly tinny, little distant, audience recording. Paul is quite audible above his band but some of the acoustic numbers do tend to suffer on the wind such as opener “Eight Days A Week”, second track “Juniors Farm” – a surprise entrant if ever there was one – sounds much better and the rock-shaped-soloing that dominates it is nice and crisp.
“All My Loving” receives a nice throaty response from the crowd, as it should, before “Listen To What The Man Says” drops in to give the crowd a little space to think.
“Let Me Roll It”, a personal favourite, although I don’t generally buy in to the theory of Paul’s voice aping Lennon’s that some perceive that they hear in the recording. Paul and his band push on with a fantastically grandiose styled version of the track alongside a side order of their fiery Hendrix tribute on the end.
Next Paul whips out his Epiphone Casino out to mention that he played it on the original version of this next song, that song turns out to be “Paperback Writer”, the Beatles ode to the up an coming journalist. The song features a carousing solo towards the middle, updating the song but going back to it’s near-psych roots at the same time. It ends with a cacophony of sounds as it screams to an end.
It’s bums on seats time now as Paul pulls out his newest composition for his wife, Nancy, the slow-paced and slushy “My Valentine”. Whatever one makes to the track we have to hope that Nancy inspires some good old-fashioned upbeat compositions from Macca such as the first single from his album, “New”.
Breaking the calm of the night is “Nineteen Hundred And Eighty-five”, the broody but excitable ‘Band On The Run’ track that reappeared only a couple of years ago sets itself out like “Paperback Writer” and launches itself in to a fury towards the end.
Linda’s tribute is rock steady. “Maybe I’m Amazed” could be Macca’s best romantic song that doesn’t fall in to winsome loveliness but turns the amps on. Flights of guitars, splashes of drums and a good dose of McCartneys falsetto singing combine to raise the temperature and the best part is, if you think of the show moving in three stages, you know he hasn’t already peeked.
To begin the second third of Macca’s show “I’ve Just Seen A Face” skiffles up the pace in to the acoustic section giving him a chance to get a little bit closer to his crowd. With a premier outing “Another Day” follows. Paul’s anaemic ‘Ram’ era single. It’s a shame he didn’t retying this one and instead pull out, at the very least, the B-side or something off of the album itself. As friendly as it is, it’s no classic.
However, everything is forgotten by the time ‘A Hard Days Night’ track “And I Love Her” appears. A real rocket for the baby boomers in the audience, a chance for the audience to sway together for a couple of brief minutes.
“Blackbird” drops after the age old story that Paul so often tells and a teasing moment when he spots a Beatles banner in the audience and acts like he was never there and before a newer story that, while less interesting, still makes him out as the man of the people.
Disk one ends with Paul’s public tribute to John Lennon, “Here Today”, mined after the passing of George and so Paul could pull out at least one song to remember them each with.
Disk Two opens with the ‘Magical Mystery Tour’ track, “Your Mother Should Know”, promotional push or change to the schedule then who knows but it does give Paul a chance to get their “Na-na-na’s” in early before the inevitable. To say, if you weren’t a fan of Paul’s tin-pan-alley stylings under “Your Mother .. ” then theres less chance you’ll enjoy “All Together Now”.
It’s understood that Macca will be adapting something to the kids, grandkids, and great grandkids who are in attendance he’s also playing for the people who say he should drop some more new tracks. No doubt if he keeps this up then we’ll stop asking. Abe takes on the ‘captains’ voice in gravelly tones, the rest provide harmonies. It’s all good fun and Paul himself understands that it’s a silly little song but it must be a turn off for most.
Another new track, “Lovely Rita”, has Paul hamming it up again but this time it’s a standard from a classic album. Luckily enough, there’s a Rita who’s stood at the front tonight too so Paul gets to throw another ad-lib in.
“Mrs. Vandebilt” from the ‘Band On The Run’ album gets a Cossack makeover towards the end due to it’s popularity over in the Baltic states. Again, it’s a treasure to hear something that Paul hasn’t played out so often that shows off his deeper or stronger songwriting capabilities.
In a twist to proceedings Paul joins back in with a Lennon / McCartney original, “Being For The Benefit Of Mister Kite”, as the story was told it was mainly a Lennon original at the time, we have to trust Paul that he had a hand within it’s conception but that it gets a little more leverage, it’s a blessing.
George’s song “Something” gets it’s reappraisal in to half plucked / half orchestrated beauty. It’s to Mr. Harrison’s credit that the only song that Paul might choose to replicate on stage can be so richly powered and delivered. John’s songs are generally not written in the type that Paul can deliver.
“Band On The Run” triggers what we generally accept as being the beginning of the big hitters, Paul McCartneys own brand of war horses pure and simple. “Back in the USSR” follows along with Paul’s story about cracking the first rock concert within Moscow’s Red Square – an event by which Paul is understandably proud.
“Let It Be” pushes a fire cracker full “Live And Let Die” then the almighty “Hey Jude” towards the end. The CD runs to over three minutes of cheering towards the end while the band take their customary leg stretch and a drink of tea ending just as the meter that begins the next track begins.
Disk Three is half an hour of solid gold. Beginning with “Day Tripper” the band weave their way through one last Wings track in “Hi, Hi, Hi” with it’s increasingly frenetic ending, back to Beatles tracks beginning at the start with “I Saw Her Standing There”, leaving the stage once more leaving Paul to return to play the inevitable but ever perennial “Yesterday”.
It’s return was a surprise a couple of years ago but now “Helter Skelter” is taking a prominent place at the end of the set list rather mystifyingly. From it’s life shadowing the Manson debacle in the late 1960′s it seems to have been taken back by Paul and even remade by his little supergroup of ex-Nirvana members ( Dubbed ‘Sirvana’) as “Cut me Some Slack”.
To the end Paul hands out thanks like sweets and then takes the audience through one last blast of ‘Abbey Road’ grandness – “Golden Slumbers”, “Carry That Weight” and “The End” are delivered as they should be – as one perfect, speeded up melody – perfect harmonies, jazz styled drumming and oodles of soloing. As much as a spectacle as you could wish for and something that sends the night off nicely (That’s if you don’t count the cascade of fireworks that formally end the show)
“Out There In Boston” is a great memento of the tour. There are incomplete webcasts circulating, audience recordings with DVDs and DVDR’s but unless theres a silver disk soundboard that finds it’s way out before the end of the tour this year, this is probably the most handsome, the best sounding and affordable way to pick up this tour.If you liked this review, buy me a cup of joe. (Suggested: $3 a shot or $7.5 for a double)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]Paul McCartney - Out There In Boston (No Label),