And is there a better symbol of the 80s? Although it didn’t make its appearance until the final group, the Regeneration Tour was definitely underscored by keyboards, starting with Naked Eyes. They started their best known song, a cover of “Always Something There To Remind Me”, with two keyboard players and a drummer. They switched around on subsequent songs, some not even using keyboards, but it was an important part of the show. It was a decent performance, but I was waiting to see my other fave, “Promises, Promises”, which they did a great version of, got everyone up and dancing.
I’m a child of the 80s, started really listening to music in 1981 (I really remember the Heavy Metal soundtrack getting a lot of rotation on Q107’s top 5 at 10). I’ll still stand by my first cassette purchase, as well as some of my ones from RCA (later BMG) Music Club. But the very first thing I owned (probably a gift) is one I still have: K-tel‘s Blast Off, an album I played so much those songs are permanently ingrained in my head (although I expect to hear skips on the first two songs).
One of the songs on there was A Flock Of Seagulls’ “I Ran (So Far Away)”, so I was pretty psyched to hear it. I’d read some reviews saying they were the weakest link of the show, but I thought they were pretty good (even if the singer skipped his hairdresser past to dress straight out of the Axl Rose Sr. catalog). “Space Age Love Song” was also pretty good.
After they finished, we had spotted our friends Hannah and Dave and went to chat with them, and got trapped when ABC started, so just grabbed some empty seats next to them for the set. They had a polished band, and sounded just like the records. They played a couple new songs that weren’t bad, but I really enjoyed the end with the triple threat of “Be Near Me”, “When Smokey Sings” and “The Look Of Love”.
We returned to our seats for the act both Jill and I wanted to see: Belinda Carlisle. Playing both her own and The Go-Go’s hits, it was the only set we knew all the songs, and Jill danced so hard she wore herself out. I’d seen The Go-Go’s twice before (and the only act of the night I’d seen any members of before) and like them, but it was a thrill to finally see her do solo songs, especially “Leave A Light On” and “Heaven Is A Place On Earth”. Great show and I might add she’s looking fantastic (though you wouldn’t know it from this photo, try this one from a couple days ago).
We had passes to the Encore Circle for the night and we went back there to get some drinks and take a break. We struck up a conversation with another couple and weren’t really paying attention when The Human League went on, but I didn’t mind as I knew they weren’t playing their hits until the end. When it came time, we went back and stood at the top of the lawn to watch them do “Human”, “Fascination” and the big one “Don’t You Want Me”. We skipped the encore of “Together In Electric Dreams” as Jill was wiped and had to get up early today, but it was a great evening and a worthy farewell to another summer season at Wolf Trap.