I saw them twice, once with my son at the Academy of Music in Philadelphia and once in Newark at the NJPAC. Both terrific shows (I saw left-handed Pauls both times, I believe). They performed professionally, light-hearted and with humor, which is a must for a tribute show not to come off as self-conscious, despite the performers wearing wigs and brightly colored silk military uniforms. The sets and videos are impressive, and you can see how well you do on the Beatles trivia questions that come up on the screens before the show.
I’m a Beatles geek who loves tribute bands, even bad ones that I can make fun of. Some unrequested observations:
[ul]A tribute band’s Paul is the key. To nail the Beatles sound “Paul” has to nail the high notes, hard and true, just as Paul did. Paul had an impressive range, so no faking it–e.g., no falsettos to hit a high note where none was used on the record–howl and shriek and croon and harmonize just as the master did (as close as possible, anyway), and it’ll sound like the lads, at least close, during the harmonies. “Real John” obviously was as important a voice in the Beatles, but in a tribute band, John’s high baritone is easier to fake and blend in. Paul has to hit the high notes like a trumpet.I only recently noticed that a majority of left-handed Pauls are actually right-handed guitar players who learned to play the bass “backwards” just for the tribute band. I noticed when I saw a Paul playing acoustic guitar right-handed for “Yesterday,” the only time in the show he played right-handed. (They actually flipped him on the video screen, but they couldn’t trick me!)Soft lighting is key. Some of the performers I’ve seen were a bit long in the tooth, especially for the mop-top part of the show. Rain was not too bad in this regard, as I recall, but we didn’t sit too close either.Ringo almost never sounds right.“George” will play all the hard guitar parts, even the ones that other Beatles played on the record (e.g., all 3 solos at the end of the Abbey Road medley), so don’t be disappointed at such inaccuracies. Most Georges will make up for it though, getting that little shuffle-dance thing down that he did, or leading into the solo on “All My Loving” using his thumb, just like real-George did on Sullivan.For some reason, most of the Beatles tribute bands I’ve seen have Paul doing most of the between-song patter, despite the fact that John did as much during real Beatles shows. No one ever does the “rattle your jewelry” line–what a missed opportunity![/ul]Rain does a terrific job, I thought. If you can have fun a such a show (I certainly can :)), you should enjoy this one. I know, I know, they’re not the Beatles, but there are moments in the show where you get goosebumps pretending, and it’s fun all around.