Having seen Crowded House a handful of times over the last couple of decades, I’ve grown to expect a lot from them.
Last week at the Tabernacle in Atlanta, they didn’t disappoint. The venue on the other hand was a big disappointment with very limited seating and a surly staff to say the least, but I digress.
Every time Neil Finn starts singing live, I’m very aware that I’m in the presence of something out of this world. With a voice like no other, Neil tells stories that are all at once mysterious and understandable.Neil is working on a new project with his wife Sharon and he’s also sporting a new mustache, which we joked about backstage after the show.
The band opened with I Feel Possessed, a dark mid-tempo from their 1988 release Temple of Low Men. As with most of the band’s songs it was written by Neil, an incredibly gifted songwriter. They followed up with In My Command, which the audience clearly was by this point, clapping and singing along to every word. Speaking of the audience, most of the crowd were predictably middle aged, but I was surprised to also see a lot of twenty somethings in attendance. My favorite song as always was Fingers of Love. So wonderfully dark and moody.
I’m always taken aback by the sheer musical talent of my friend Mark Hart, the band’s lead guitar/keyboard/backing vocalist. He literally plays everything exceptionally well. I didn’t get a chance after the show to ask him if he has always had a slide guitar perched on top of his keyboard or if that was new. In any case it was the first time I’d noticed it.
It was wonderful to see Nick in great spirits and get a chance to chat with him about his studio in Dublin and the baby girl he has since I last saw him. Such a nice guy.
Since 2007, Matt Sherrod has been the drummer in Crowded House and he really is a great fit both in terms of playing style and personality. Matt was previously in Beck’s band and is now a Nashville resident.
The band signed autographs and took photos with their fans for a long time before getting back on the bus to head to Nashville. Neil made a point to call out “Bye Samantha!” as he was heading for the bus and it made my night. I felt sad to say goodbye to Mark and was filled with memories of being neighbors on Beachwood Drive when I would wake up hearing his beautiful classical piano playing drifting through my bedroom window from downstairs. Safe travels guys and see you next time!