02.04.2008 - 2008-02-04 SINGAPORE: National Indoor Arena / Still captivating...
The Police are a reunion worth waiting for...
More than 10,000 fans were in The Police's custody in Singapore last week, and they loved every minute of it.
AGE might have crept up on them but if there's any doubt that it might lessen The Police's live prowess, their gig last Monday at the Singapore Indoor Stadium should silence sceptics.
Vocalist-bassist Sting, drummer Stewart Copeland and guitarist Andy Summers proved to the capacity crowd of 10,700 roaring fans just why they are one of the most revered rock acts of modern time.
The fans, mostly baby boomers, stood up and roared their approval when the show opened with 'Message In A Bottle' and they remained on their feet for most of the concert.
They knew the lyrics to every song as the band ran through a seamless string of hits such as 'Don't Stand So Close To Me', 'Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic' and 'Roxanne'.
It's a testament to their song-crafting abilities that a mere three-piece rock band can make their three-minute reggae and jazz-tinged ditties larger than life, sans fancy stage backdrop.
They didn't need elaborate set-ups - all focus was on the three.
Sting, 56, and Copeland, 55, have lost none of their nimbleness with their instruments. Summers, 65, may be jumping a little less higher than in his heyday but his fingers still flew fast and furious on his Fender guitars.
Copeland leapt from his drum set to a set of chimes for 'Wrapped Around Your Finger' and 'King Of Pain'.
Before they came on at 9.15pm, the audience was warmed up by opening act Fiction Plane, led by Sting's son Joe Sumner.
The 31-year-old is a chip off the old block, right down to the three-piece rock band line-up, the Fender bass as choice of instrument and a wailing voice that sounds so much like his father's.
But it was his Dad that the fans came to see and they rose to their feet, clapped in unison and sang along whenever Sting, looking youthful in tight black pants, bade them to.
Playing for an hour and 40 minutes, the band capped their performance with two sets of encore, including a rousing version of their biggest hit, 'Every Breath You Take'.
This was the reunion concert that their fans have been waiting for the last 20 years. The band, formed in Britain in the late 1970s, disbanded in the mid-1980s, arguably at the peak of their career.
The reunion tour was named the biggest money-spinner in the United States by Billboard last year, raking in over US$200mil (RM660mil).
The Police broke records in Singapore, too. With ticket prices peaking at S$600 (RM1,380) a seat, the receipts totalled a little under S$3mil (RM6.9mil).
Fans were only too happy to spend on Sting and company. Twenty-year-old student Tri Yuhiyarto Wijoyono Sigit was not even born when The Police disbanded but he flew in from Indonesia and bought premium seats to see his musical heroes in action.
"I've been listening to The Police since I was 12," he said. "Getting to see them live is amazing, like a dream come true."
© The Malaysia Star by Eddino Abdul Hadi