Monday, July 23, 2007


Before Stars, before Billy Bragg, and just after the Beatles, there was The Police. Theirs was the first record I bought, the first real concert I saw, and my first musical obsession. But it’s been years since they mattered to me, so I had low expectations for their reunion concert here in Toronto last night. And luckily so. Despite a few numbers (“So Lonely” and “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic” being the standouts), The Police never really let loose, choosing instead to put a pseudo-jazz spin on most songs: often slowing them down to a snail’s pace or adding pointless solos. Individually, they still had the chops, especially Stewart Copeland, who was ferocious on drums. But the cynicism ran high for this show, a concert sponsored by Best Buy, opened by Sting’s son, and with tickets that could be purchased three days in advance — as long as you bought a $120 membership to The Police fan club. All of which could have been forgotten had they delivered the goods. They didn’t.
(On a side note, however, it was great to see my buddies Carman, Schurko and Swistun, along with my brother, who came from Winnipeg and Windsor to see the show. Next time, we’ll just sing along to Rob on guitar!)

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