It’s been a while since OrigiBrad (Brad One or Melbourne Brad) has popped onto the pages of auspOp, but we couldn’t resist sending him along to Delta Goodrem’s show for a live review.
I’m back (temporarily) auspOp readers!
Speaking of comebacks (and awkward segues), it has been nearly four years since Delta last played a full-length show in Melbourne, but she more than made up for it when she played at Margaret Court Arena last night.
Gone was the ‘hippy’ Delta proclaiming herself as the “child of the universe”, and in her place was what I like to call the ‘Barefoot Diva’.
Her ‘Wings Of The Wild’ show had a great ebb and flow, and it mostly highlighted her strengths. For example, Delta mainly left her famously dodgy dancing to the audience so she could focus her energy on hitting all of the notes required of her.
She was supported by a fantastic band of musicians and singers who help make ‘Wings Of The Wild’ sound better live than it does on record (or on Spotify for you millennials).
Songs like ‘Enough’, ‘Just Call’, and ‘The River’ shine live, and received standing ovations from an audience made up of many families.
These new songs were performed amongst all of her best-known hits, including a Latin-inspired version of ‘Not Me, Not I’ and a 1980s-esque remixed version of ‘Predictable’.
Delta was also happy to indulge die-hard fans in their favourite album cuts such as ‘Touch’ from her last album and ‘Will You Fall For Me’ from ‘Innocent Eyes’.
A personal highlight was ‘Brave Face’ from her 2007 album ‘Delta’ which was transformed from being about a couple in love to a moving self-mantra with harmonies provided by Delta’s ‘guardian angels’ (AKA the sisters of S2S dressed in heavenly white).
There is no doubt that Ms. Goodrem is a great all-around entertainer, with more confidence than ever in commanding a crowd.
However, for a lot of the two-hour show, there were way too many vocal runs. For example, her performance of ‘I Believe In A Thing Called Love’ should have been a showstopper with Delta’s phenomenal delivery, but it almost felt like more of the same, given the vocal rollercoaster we’d already spent ninety minutes on.
Instead, the highlight of the night ended up being ‘Just Call’ with its Zumba-esque choreography and crowd interaction.
Taking a nod from the same technique Ricky Martin showed off on his ‘One World’ tour last year, Delta got everyone up and dancing by teaching them simple moves.
Molly Meldrum summed it up best when, during his cameo stage crash in the following number, asked Delta to stop what she was doing and go back to ‘Just Call’!
I could easily go on about all of the great moments during the show (the acapella section! The dance megamix! ‘Believe Again’ in all of its melodramatic glory!), but I’m already well over the word limit and have yet to reach my conclusion.
I do want to discuss ‘Born To Try’ though. I think Australia has forgotten how good a song that is. The concept of ‘having a go’ is synonymous with this country and Delta’s first big single captured that beautifully. It was performed just like we all remembered it from nearly fourteen (!!) years ago, with barely a vocal run in sight!
Yes, the video vignettes were a bit ridiculous, and the show was possibly a few songs too long, but very few performers can consistently write and perform melodies as good as Delta can.
Perhaps the best way of looking at it is that Delta doesn’t do anything by halves; her songs are highly emotional, and so are the theatrics that comes with it.
If Delta has to change things up vocally to keep songs interesting to her after so many years of success, perhaps we as listeners and concertgoers just have to respect that.
When the hits are as consistently good from ‘Born To Try’ all the way through to ‘Wings’ (which ended with a confetti explosion during the final chorus – naturally!), who are we to complain?
Brad attended Delta’s show as a guest of Sony Music.
Delta plays the Adelaide Entertainment Centre tomorrow night, with shows to follow in Perth and Brisbane.
November 05 : Adelaide (Entertainment Centre)
November 08 : Perth (Perth Arena)
November 11 : Brisbane (Convention Centre)