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Usher Hall, Edinburgh 19 February 2005
In the somewhat incongruous setting of the resplendent Usher Hall, a music
venue more used to the Scottish National Orchestra than a rock and roll
combo, Status Quo were catching up with one of the shows cancelled from
Thereís no point trying to criticise Status Quo. They know who they are and
what they do, and if the crowd seem more suited to a southern snake handling
revivalist meeting, so what. So, when the house lights dimmed and the sold
out crowd rushed to the front, and the first strains of 'Caroline' were
heard from behind the 20ft high backdrop of Francis Rossi and Rick Parfitt,
it was time to drop any critical preconceptions.
After a lean few years, quality wise, Quo have returned to what they do
best. Brutal, 12 bar boogie. I wasnít really expecting too much as the
last few times Iíve caught them theyíve been uninspired, but with a set
largely carved from their seventies classic, and with Francis Rossi in
inspired form, a grand time was had by all.
I donít think Iíve seen Rossi play better and I bought a ticket for their
first farewell tour! And with 'Break The Rules', '4500 Times', 'Rain',
'Hold You Back' and 'Big Fat Mama' all present and correct, they didnít put
a foot wrong. Even the recent songs chucked in mid set were up-tempo and
not out of place. Although I canít abide 'The Oriental', 'Creepin' Up On
You' was one of the surprise highlights.
When the three (sometimes four) guitars locked together, the wall of sound
was something to behold. Andy Bown was exceptional (and a bit of a show
off), handling keyboards, harmonica, guitar and backing vocals. Thankfully
the days of 'Burning Bridges' and 'Marguerita Time' seem a million years
away, with the Quo once more rocking all over the world.
Review and pic: Stuart A Hamilton