Sting goes back to basics with Fox concert...
English rocker Sting kept it simple and straightforward at his concert Tuesday night at the Fox Theatre.
When Sting last visited these parts two years ago at Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, he lushly recreated his classics with the help of the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra.
This time, Sting came with a band including Dominic Miller on guitar, Vinnie Colauita on drums, David Sancious on keyboards and Peter Tickell on a mean electric fiddle for a show that took fans in another direction.
Sting and his band were most interested in rocking out, pumping up songs such as 'Demolition Man', 'Driven to Tears' and 'Next to You' to maximum effect, in ways that couldn't play out with the orchestra show.
At the same time, the show felt scaled down and free of frills.
During the two-hour show, which started with 'All This Time' and 'Every Little Thing She Does is Magic', Sting mixed his solo material with some select Police songs, a mix that wasn't entirely pleasing.
Sting can never go wrong when he performs 'King of Pain' and 'Every Breath You Take', two golden Police nuggets saved for the encore here, but where were 'Roxanne' and 'Message in a Bottle'? Sure, songs get temporarily put on the shelf, but that should never happen with 'Roxanne'.
The same can be said for some of the solo song choices. 'Fields of Gold', 'If You Love Somebody Set Them Free' and 'If I Ever Lose My Faith in You' still bristle with greatness, but where were 'Shape of My Heart' and 'Fragile'.
Sting often pulled out lesser-known songs in the concert's home stretch. It might've been a dream come true for the most hardcore of Sting fans, but not so much for everyone else.
Sting, mostly in good voice and backed vocally by Jo Lawry, talked about great songs written about St. Louis and said he wished he'd written one. But since he hadn't, he said he'd sing one he wrote about New York, natually introducting 'Englishman in New York', which came with a funky, out-of-nowhere breakdown.
He told fans he always loved country music and tried to write country music for years, but there was a problem with authenticity. So he was happy when Toby Keith took a Sting-penned song to the top of the charts. He misidentified the song as 'I Hung My Head', which Johnny Cash actually covered.
After correcting himself and performing the ballad, he performed his song that Keith covered, 'I'm So Happy I Can't Stop Crying'.
'Sacred Love', he said, was his bringing together of two of his favorite things, sex and religion, two things he says people usually separate.
The mystic 'Desert Rose' kicked off the satisfying string of encore songs.
(c) Stltoday.com by Kevin C. Johnson