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Hall & Oates Live Concert Fan Reviews


 03/20/2005: Kokusai Forum, Tokyo, Japan

Written by Rachel Lee, a fan from Taipei, Taiwan

Reviewing the March 21, 2005 Our Kind of Soul concert in Kokusai Forum, Tokyo, Japan


Iím a long-time H&O fan from Taiwan, and I saw their concerts for the first time in 1989 when they came to Taipei for the Ooh Yeah tour. Iíve been their fan since high school, and now Iím 37. Due to duties as a mother and wife and for my career, there was a time when I thought Iíve lost the enthusiasm for music, i.e. for H&O. With the release of the Do It for Love album, however, the passion for music was rekindled and all the great memory for my youth days was brought back to me. I want to thank H&O for all this.

Earlier this year, I learned it from the web that these guys were having concerts in Japan, which is about three hours flight from my country. I really wanted to see them again, so I asked my cousin, who live in Tokyo, to buy the tickets for me. I arranged a three-day trip to Tokyo, with my husband and ten-year-old son, and I really think itís worthwhile as the concert turned out to be one of the most emotional moments of my life.

The concert began with Maneater, and both Daryl and John sounded, and of course looked, fabulous! ( Itís hard to believe that these guys are almost 60!) Then they charmed the audience with a series of new songs and classic tunes, with a great, super-professional band that interacted so well with each other, and of course, with the fans. Many songs were rendered like youíve never heard them before, even for old-day classics like Sara Smile and Sheís Gone. Iíve been to H&Oís concerts twice and I owned a lot of their live performance videotapes and DVDs. But you can never get bored when you go to their concerts, because they actually rearranged their songs every time! In the Mar 21 Tokyo concert, for example, Sara Smile was elaborated into a longer version and faded out into another tune, Canít Stop Dreaming. That was really brilliant, as Daryl kind of performed it in a dramatic way and the arrangement was really genius. I remember that Daryl once said in an interview that their songs ďevolveĒ every time they play them.

I also noticed that Daryl danced a lot more than before in this concert, especially when he sang those old Philly classics. His voice was still the greatest gift of God from heaven! He did a special cover version of Harry Nilssonís Without You for Japanís fans, and his voice was really beyond description. Maybe some people would think that H&O was doing an effortless job with Our Kind of Soul as it is actually a cover album, but for me it is really a landmark for their eventual retrieval to their true origin, the real roots of their music. I mean, some of their most successful albums, like Big Bam Boom, are great, but they are not real H&O music. My personal opinion is that the change is excellent news for fans who really take them seriously.

In one word, the Tokyo concert was great. It may not be like those 80ís big-gig concerts with tens of thousands of audience, but it has a cozy, interactive atmosphere in the medium-size venue, and, whatís most important, all the fans there know one thingówe all like the music of Daryl and John.

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