LIVE: Nick Lowe @ Club Helsinki, 10/7/15
Review and photographs by Ed Conway
Ten months after his blockbuster concert at The Egg with Los Straitjackets on his Quality Holiday Revue, Nick Lowe made a solo stop at Club Helsinki in Hudson. From the time he hit the stage, he held everyone’s attention – something not always easily attained by a solo performer – with a nice blend of his songs and humorous stories accompanied by an ever present twinkle in his eye.
He was completely at ease, despite his warning that this was only the second stop on this mini-tour and the wheels could come off at any time – although he admitted that “someone earnestly trying to prevent the wheels coming off is immensely entertaining.” Fortunately, all four wheels stayed on, and the show still remained immensely entertaining.
His soft voice reminded me of a parent reading a story to their child as he let the songs unfold on their own. His lyrics contained nice little nuggets of humor such as “I Trained Her to Love Me,” a song that can make you cringe but solicited laughter throughout as it was clear it was meant this way.
His set spanned pretty much his entire career, deftly sprinkling songs from his newer and older albums. It’s hard to pick out a highlight as the evening went so fast, it was hard to believe he had done 18 songs in his regular set and then tossed in four more for an encore.
One that stood out, however, was “The Beast in Me,” which he wrote for his former father-in-law, Johnny Cash. He admitted it took 12 years to write. This was definitely a lesson in perseverance.
Nick Lowe hits the road again in a few weeks for a continuation of the Quality Holiday Revue tour with Los Straitjackets. This time, the tour will be in the southeast and west coast. Sadly, there are no northeast dates, but as a consolation, Black Friday will see the release of The Quality Holiday Revue Live album, which was recorded live during the 2014 tour.
The opening act at Club Helsinki, Josh Rouse, also did a solo set. His voice and style was a nice match to Lowe, and there were a fair number of fans who had clearly come to see him as well. A couple of requests were shouted from the audience, and he bravely picked one in particular to do, even though it had been awhile since he performed it.
Song o’ the Week: “Half a Boy and Half a Man” by Nick Lowe & Los Straitjackets
LIVE: Nick Lowe’s Quality Holiday Revue @ The Egg, 12/19/14
LIVE: Nick Lowe @ Club Helsinki, 8/21/13
LIVE: Nick Lowe @ The Egg, 9/18/12
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NICK LOWE SET LIST
Lay It On Me ???
Long Limbed Girl
Rome Wasn’t Built in a Day
What’s Shakin On the Hill
I Trained Her to Love Me
I Live On a Battlefield
The Beast in Me
Cruel to Be Kind
Just Don’t Wanna Be Lonely ???
Somebody Cares for Me
House for Sale
I Knew the Bride (When She Used to Rock And Roll)
When I Write the Book
(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love and Understanding