Concert Reviews

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers / Stevie Nicks Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     July 24, 2017    
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Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers / Stevie Nicks - Hyde Park, London (UK) - 09 July 2017

Having Tom Petty and Stevie Nicks perform together for me is a musical match made in heaven. Both have walked a musical and personnel path together for many years. Neither performs much in Europe these days, and with Petty celebrating his 40th anniversary, it really was cause for celebration.

Nicks has recently revamped her set-list, digging deep into her past solo efforts and, of course, touching on her career in Fleetwood Mac. This beautiful summer day finds her decked out in sunglasses and lace dress with boots as she defies her age in both voice and image. Long term guitarist Waddy Wachtel kicks off the riff to a wonderful 'Gold And Braid' and Nicks twirls and dances with him, her first class backing band keeping the grove pulsing.

Fleetwood Mac classics like 'Gypsy' and 'Dreams' are more familiar to the majority of the audience, while deeper cuts like 'Gold Dust Woman' still sound awe-inspiring. This really is a dream set-list from her solo years, with MTV hits such as 'If Anyone Falls' and 'Stand Back' sitting comfortably alongside gems like 'Bella Donna', 'Outside The Rain' and the classic 'Edge Of Seventeen'; sadly 'Rooms On Fire', a big hit in the UK, is not included. A nice touch is when she shares her memories of many of the songs. By the time she plays 'Rhiannon' and 'Landslide', Hyde Park is in the palm of her hands.

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Following an act like Nicks would normally be a daunting task for any performer, only Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers are not just any performers! Petty does not rely on a greatest hits set, peppering the night with new songs and rarely heard gems. It is worth the wait to any casual fan as the music is that good, with only the silences between songs and Petty's slow talking drawl losing any musical momentum. That said, he looks to be in good spirits and enjoying conversing with the audience.

Having two female backing singers adds a more organic sound to the mix, and helps out with some of the more difficult songs like 'Free Falling' or 'Refugee', to be honest the crowd almost drowns out the band, singing along. It would have been a missed opportunity to not have Nicks join the band for the duet 'Stop Dragging My Heart Around'. The song is a little slower and lower in key, though it takes none of the magic away from this moment.

How lucky we are to have both of these legends still gigging in their later years, and giving such good performances.

Ray Paul

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