Talking Heads’ David Byrne celebrates Brian Eno influence

Via The Courier Mail

By Noah Mengel

For 30 years, David Byrne's challenge has been to get people dancing in a way that is not only entertaining but intellectually interesting.

By the end of this joyful two-hour set at the Brisbane Convention Centre on Saturday, February 7, you had to conclude that he had met the challenge and perfected the art.

He takes the stage with his band (drums, percussion, bass, keys, three singers) all clad in white.

Byrne is still very fit and lean, looking much the same as he did in Talking Heads, except his hair is now the colour of the outfits.

They were soon joined by three dancers and from there it was non-stop movement, a feast for the eyes and the senses.

Byrne's new album, Everything That Happens Will Happen Today, is a reunion with producer Brian Eno, who teamed with him to create three Talking Heads albums as well as 1983's My Life in the Bush of Ghosts.

This concert is a celebration of that music, from new material such as Strange Overtones, the funkiest track on the new album, to Talking Heads material such as Heaven - and the choicest cuts of the classic Remain In Light album.

Byrne and band, underpinned by the jaw-droppingly good bass grooves of Paul Frazier, even found a way to perform Help Me Somebody from Ghosts, originally constructed with voices taped from the radio.

The dancers are youthful and athletic, and while their choreographed routines were not always strictly in synch with the music - this is a live band, after all - they certainly added to the spectacle rather than distracted from it.

As fans of Talking Heads videos know, Byrne is quite a mover himself, and by the time of Once In a Lifetime and Life During Wartime the urge to dance was becoming irresistible.

Everyone was on their feet for the encore, which included a superb version of Al Green's Take Me to the River, a staple of the Talking Heads repertoire.

No Psycho Killer - that didn't fit the music-made-with-Eno theme - but everyone went into the night reminded that music made for dancing is a pleasure we all need more of.

Especially music as powerful as this.

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