Published Mar 02, 2009It's hard to go to a David Byrne show with anything but high expectations. After all, this isn't some blog-hyped young whippersnapper we're talking about here, but a man who's captivated audiences for over 30 years, both as the head Talking Head and as a solo artist. And while that alone would have made Byrne's Vancouver show a sight to be seen, it also came in honour of his first collaboration with Brian Eno in 27 years, Everything That Happens Will Happen Today, as well as the duo's drool-worthy Talking Heads work - a fact that would make any hipster go weak in the knees.
Opening with the funked-out "Strange Overtones," the 56-year-old Byrne quickly proved he's lost little with age, setting into motion a show filled with more energy, inspiration and all-out passion than that of someone half his age. It also didn't hurt that he was backed by quite the impressive cast of players, as well as a trio of interpretive dancers, who like Byrne all dressed in blinding white and got their groove on good and proper from the get-go.
For two hours, the all-smiles crew never offered a dull moment, delivering almost every Byrne/Eno track you could have hoped for - "Heaven," "Life During Wartime," the entire A-side to Remains in Light, and even My Life in the Bush of Ghosts' "Help Me Somebody." It was all more than enough to get the near sold-out crowd up out of their seats and grooving to Byrne's every herky-jerky move.
By the time a triple encore rolled out such Talking Heads classics as "Air," "Take Me to the River" and a rousing "Burning Down the House" (which found all 11 on stage donning tutus), the only thing that could have made this show any more stunning was Eno's physical presence. But hey, maybe that's just getting greedy.