Ok, so i was at both FTTW and Encore.
i agree that it’s like comparing apples and pranges.
1996 was like farewelling my teenage years and my all time favourite band. But i was conscious on the night and ever since when watching the show that for all the emotion and amazing moments (snippet of throw yr arms around me, hess’s tears, DDIO hanging final chord before a singalong coda) it was nowhere near their best gig (and ive seen close to 30). Tim’s singing was horribly out of tune, marks guitar on the distnt sun solo was out of tune, paul’s humour was a bit off for the kind of show that it was and nick seemed quite joyless on the night. Neil really did work like a craftsman to make it all stick together. An amazing night, incredibly emotional, a lot of baggage, and absolutely the right thing to do.
Encore was a band at peace. Several incarnations removed, older, wiser, more content. Ive never witnessed so much love ‘ina room’ for a band as that night. Their playing was effortless high class. The songs proved themselves truly timeless. Kids, grandparents, 40 somethings and even teens. It was quite something to behold. Neil’s songs have a hold on australian psyche ina very special way. It’s not inherently of australia like pail kelly. It’s not inherebtly 1980s like jimmy barnes. Neil and a bunch of mates happened to be living on our shores when he wrote and they helped craft some of the most delightful pop music of the lst 40 years. We love them for it and sydney, the showy tart that she is, has an amazing way of showing it.
FTTW was the release we all had to have. Encore was like a joyous dessert u never thought u were going to be allowed to enjoy.
chalk and cheese, each hugely significant at their time.
other bands have a wild moment - it’s quite incredible to be reflecting on two 20 years apart