I'm surprised that there haven't been any fan reviews of the Australasian leg of the tour.
I went to the show on Saturday night and thought it was brilliant.
I am a Fleetwood Mac fan as well as a Neil fan so would have still been attending had Neil not been there. From a Fleetwood Mac sense, both Christine and Stevie's voices have deteriorated a bit since the On With The Show tour. Stevie just seems to have lost a bit of range, but there were times when Christine really seemed to struggle. That said, they are mid 70s, and you can't expect them to sound like they did 40 (or even 20) years ago. John and Mick are still one of my favourite rhythm sections and their playing is still amazing.
I feel that Mike Campbell and Neil have given an old band a new lease of life (I am hoping there will be new music, but that may need to be another topic). I loved seeing Neil in this setting. He sung and played his heart out, and given he was playing his hometown got an incredible reception.
The setlist was the same as it has been for the rest of this leg of the tour. It was interesting that Blue Letter was on the setlist but crossed out. It seems weird it has just been played once. There seems to be an intention to play it given it made the setlist, so wonder why it got scratched late in the piece?
Neil nailed all his songs. As much as I like Lindsey Buckingham, I found myself preferring Neil sing his songs than I did Lindsey sing them last tour. I really didn't expect this to be the case. I also thought Neil was simply brilliant on Man of the World, and would have like to have heard him singing more older Mac songs (I wish Hypnotised was still in the set). That said, the crowd lapped up the setlist as it was. The only time people appeared to sit down was during Man of the World, so more obscure songs would have been largely unappreciated by the majority and disrupted the concert flow. I guess thats why so many have been pruned out this tour...
I was fortunate to be in the front row, and as far as concert experiences go, this was amazing. The stage was quite high, so the view was not great sitting down, but the security guards came around before the show started and said that it was fine to stand, dance, do whatever we wanted as long as we didn't put our drinks on the stage. I didn't use my seat for the entire show and didn't have to worry about those behind because there was enough space in the front of the stage, and with the stage being high, it didn't ruin their view. That said, I think 80% of the audience were in their feet for the whole gig anyway.
My wife attended with me and it was interesting to get her assessment. She is not exactly a Neil fan. She describes him as boring and she opts out of seeing most of his gigs. However last night she thought he was fantastic (but thought DDIO was boring!) and absolutely loved the gig and thought it far superior to the two previous Fleetwood Macs gigs we had been to.
I appreciate Neil's musicianship, good humour and wit too much to ever consider him close to boring, but there are times when his performances are very animated, and other times when they are pretty sedate. It probably doesn't help that his last two albums (Light Sleeper and Out of Silence) were on the sleepy side.
My favourite instance of Neil live, is "The Ant" from Split Enz (my least favourite is Neil stuck behind a piano). The Ant still comes out for the Split Enz reunion tours and every now and then you see a glimpse in his solo shows, but it seems to have been less and less visible in recent years. On Saturday night, I felt the Ant was back in full force. Even the hair style was very Enz like! There was energy and power there, that I haven't seen for a while... I am keen for more of that...