SHOW REVIEW

Police deliver night of music, memories...

The Police, headed by Sting, proved their enduring place in music history, with a successful return after 24 years.

A decade ago, if somebody mentioned that The Police had re-formed and were coming to Perth as part of a massive stadium tour, you would have been locked away.

Nowadays, with acts such as The Eagles, Toto and the Spice Girls making incredible amounts of money from farewell reunion tours, it really was only a matter of time before Sting and the boys put their issues aside for some major coin.

The Police finally made their way to Perth last Friday night, after already completing more than 100 shows and grossing close to $200 million.

The crowd was filled with long-time fans who were beside themselves at the chance to hear some of their greatest hits.

Alongside these diehards were a large proportion of young females who had turned out to hear the strangest support act in recent memory, Black Eyed Peas Fergie, currently one of the hottest pop stars on the planet. The set was filled with tracks from her debut album 'The Dutchess'.

And while hits like 'Big Girls Don't Cry' and 'Glamorous' are obviously popular, it was still a mystery as to why she was supporting one of the 1980s most iconic bands.

After a surprisingly short wait, original band members Sting, Andy Summers and Stewart Copeland strolled on stage to blistering applause before launching into one their biggest hits, 'Message In A Bottle' from their second album, 1979's 'Reggatta de Blanc'.

Sting's voice defied his 55 years, and he looked like he had just returned from a decade-long holiday in the Caribbean.

Even though the band split up 24 years ago and they only released five albums during their original seven years together, the songs sounded as fresh and memorable as they did the first time round.

After a wonderful extended rendition of 'Walking On The Moon', Fergie played the role of sexy school girl as she returned to the stage to duet with Sting on a poppy version of 'Don't Stand So Close to Me'.

The business end of the show came down to a four-song run that included crowd-pleasing versions of 'Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic', 'De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da' and finishing up with perhaps the evening's highlight, a stirring rendition of 1981's 'Invisible Sun'.

After finishing their main set with their biggest hit 'Roxanne', the band returned for the first of two much demanded encores.

Although 'King of Pain' was a highlight, it was topped by 'So Lonely' because of Copeland's amazing drum solo, which proved that even after all this time, he still is one of the best in the business.

Predictably, 'Every Breath You Take' had the crowd singing, swaying and crying along.

But, when you looked around during this iconic track, the diversity of the crowd showed that the enduring and lasting value of one the 80s greatest bands had brought people together for a simply marvellous evening of music and memories and you can't do much better than that.

(c) Joondalup Times



24 years on, Police deliver the goods...

''The question is my Australian mates, are you ready to sing tonight?'' asked a tanned and fit Sting at the first of two reunion concerts by The Police at Members Equity Stadium last night.

All 25,000 fans were ready to sing along with the three erstwhile blonde boys who have put aside personal acrimony to reunite after 24 years for a money-spinning world tour, kicking off in Canada last May.

One of the many highlights of last night's performance was 'Don't Stand So Close to Me', which saw support act Fergie, who found fame with the Black Eyed Peas, join the band on stage. The other support act was Sting's son Joe Sumner's band Fiction Plane, who opened proceedings before Fergie, who sang her chart-busting single 'Big Girls Don't Cry'.

The Police's arresting performance began with their first No. 1 single, 'Message In A Bottle', and was soon followed by their second, 'Walking On The Moon'. While Sting's vocals and Andy Summers' slippery guitar lines were front and centre, Stewart Copeland reminded fans why he is considered one of the world's greatest drummers.

The crowd copped a fizzy fusion of punk, jazz and white-boy reggae, with The Police delivering a dynamic sound without augmenting their three piece line-up with extra musicians. The band finished their main set with probably their most famous song 'Roxanne', which they released exactly 30 years ago.

(c) The West Australian by Simon Collins



Police work their magic...

''Sometimes I wonder what the f**k happened,'' Sting lamented to the 25,000-strong crowd at The Police reunion concert at Members Equity Stadium.

The peroxide blonde singer and bassist wasn't referring to the untimely demise of his band back in 1984, but he might as well have been.

After all, who could help but wonder what might have been if Sting, guitarist Andy Summers and drummer Stewart Copeland had not imploded after releasing only five albums?

The flipside of the coin is that with no new album to promote, the band didn't play any obscure or unknown new songs, instead they delivered exactly what their audience wanted, their greatest hits. Only one song was ''missing'' as such, 81's hit 'Spirits in a Material World'.

With a crystal dangling around his neck and his azure blue eyes flashing, Sting looked yoga-fit and sounded incredible.

Andy Summers looked a tad glum, but perhaps the heat was just getting to the slightly portly guitarist. A South Park guitar strap held his hopes to his chest as he worked his magic.

Behind the drums Stewart Copeland in a black sweatband and white gloves had a slightly manic cartoonish quality about him. His huge kit got a massive workout and every now and then he would get up to tinker with a free-standing percussion set or beat a huge gong.

Support act Fergie joined the band for 'Don't Stand So Close To Me'. Thankfully she had changed out of the shiny black leggings she wore during her own set - there was only room for one pair of dodgy black pants on this stage and Sting had them covered. Instead Fergie was content to shimmy and shake her booty in a tiny black skirt, evidently enjoying the role of the schoolgirl vixen.

'Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic' and 'De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da' inspired crowd singalongs, but it was the sparse and beautiful 'Wrapped Around Your Finger' that proved to be the first real standout of the night.

'Can't Stand Losing You' and the 30-year-old 'Roxanne' rounded out the first set.

To much cheering, the band returned to perform 'King of Pain' and the brilliant 'So Lonely'. By this stage the extended improvisations that adorned almost every song were wearing a little thin, but all was forgiven when the familiar intro to 'Every Breath You Take' resounded around the stadium. Needless to say this was the song most had been waiting for.

Sting and Copeland exited the stage for the second time, but Summers seemed reluctant to budge. Wandering around he waved his arms in the air to conjure applause and tapped his watch to hurry the band back on stage. His little comedy skit went down a treat. When Copeland and Sting returned they performed ''Next To You'' from arguably their best album 'Outlandos D'Amour'.

The song rounded out an arresting night of reggae-infused, jazz-tinged punk and it went down a treat. Cop that indeed.

(c) Perth Now by Jay Hanna

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