07.11.2007 - 2007-07-11 TAMPA, FL: St. Petersburg Times Forum / The Police Don't Hold Back Hits At Forum...
The Police Don't Hold Back Hits At Forum...
From the roar that greeted The Police on Wednesday night, it seemed as if the crowd of 21,077 had spent the 20-plus years since the trio last toured awaiting its return.
The threesome, in the midst of a reunion tour few fans thought they'd ever see, delivered a hit-filled set to the sold-out St. Pete Times Forum crowd.
The show was satisfying overall, with some transcendent moments but a few rough patches early on.
After brisk run-throughs of 'Message in a Bottle' and 'Synchronicity II', the band went into a so-so 'Walking on the Moon', marred by some pointless noodling. A medley of 'Voices Inside My Head' and 'When the World Is Running Down, You Make the Best of What's Still Around' found both songs reworked almost beyond recognition.
If it wasn't entirely successful, it was heartening to see the band taking chances. Andy Summers' guitar work was brilliant here, as it was throughout the evening.
'Don't Stand So Close to Me' sounded passionless, the one time Wednesday night the entire group seemed uninvolved.
'Driven to Tears', though, set things right, with Summers' slashing guitar chords and Sting's emotion-packed vocals.
From here on out the set was mostly golden. 'Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic' was charged with an energy not present on the studio version. Drummer Stewart Copeland colored 'Wrapped Around Your Finger' with an array of mallet percussion.
Copeland seemed to be in constant motion behind his kit, as if to compensate for a perceived need of extra limbs. Singer-bassist Sting seemed resigned to being the trio's anchor, keeping the music grounded while Summers and Copeland explored their instrumental flights of fancy.
The show's peak was a majestic 'Can't Stand Losing You' that flowed seamlessly into 'Reggatta de Blanc' and back out again. If a band has ever fired on all cylinders creatively and technically, it was during this number.
'Roxanne', the song that introduced The Police to U.S. radio audiences in 1979, closed out the pre-encore portion of the show, with the trio finding new musical treasures to mine even in this chestnut.
The punky 'Next to You' closed the show in a frenzy that would shame bands half the age of The Police.
© The Tampa Tribune by Curtis Ross