Live Review: Rain A Tribute To The Beatles — The Pantages Theater
Mon, 18 Apr 2011 12:13:38
At The Pantages Theater in Hollywood last night, Rain not only conjured the sounds of The Beatles, but the group also perfectly summoned the sights, smells, and spirit.
Rain isn't simply a tribute to The Beatles; it's a resurrection of the soul that made the group's music immortal. The Broadway show returned to L.A. for a special engagement at The Pantages, and it brought the time machine along with it. During two hours that flew by way too quickly, the group managed to cover all of The Beatles' most important moments from playing the "The Ed Sullivan Show" to transforming music forever with Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, and every era was given ample attention.
For that replication of the Ed Sullivan performance, "I Want To Hold Your Hand" and "A Hard Day's Night" vibrated with an undeniably danceable twist-n-shout. With mop tops and perfectly pressed suits, each note proved chillingly perfectly whether it was a saccharine vocal hook or reverberating chord strum. It kicked off everything brilliantly.
As the video screens flanking either side of the stage morphed the setting, Rain took over Shea Stadium, hitting a massive homerun with the timeless twang of guitar fireworks on "Daytripper." "Yesterday" floated on a slow finger-picked acoustic guitar, allowing the group's vibrant vulnerability to shine as brightly as the lights flashing on stage. The players nailed each nuance flawlessly, allowing for The Beatle's rapture to live on loudly.
The show became especially entrancing once the "psychedelics" set in—musically, that is. Colored by smoke and tie-dye fluorescent lights, Rain introduced the audience to "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band," beautifully marrying instrumental virtuosity and classic melodies. "With A Little Help From My Friends" sailed straight from Liverpool into the hearts and souls of everyone within earshot. "When I'm 64" was dedicated to everyone's who's young at heart, and it brought out youthfulness everywhere, while "A Day In The Life" was as somberly sensitive as it was upliftingly unique.
Adorning the appropriate garb and tossing in a well-timed joke every now and again, Rain spliced in classic footage—as well as some hilarious old commercials—seamlessly. "Hey Jude" evoked the evening's most overpowering sing-a-long, while "Eleanor Rigby" no doubt still haunts everyone in attendance.
John Lennon, George Harrison, Paul McCartney, and Ringo Starr always gave the show and song of a lifetime, whether they were on stage and in the studio. Rain proudly continues that tradition.
Have you seen Rain? What's your favorite Beatles song?