I managed to miss the first two or three songs (... honestly, who starts at the starting time?! no band I know). I got there and I was like, "wow, they're actually playing her songs for ambience, that's a nice touch". But no, it was actually her. :)
The first half was older stuff as well as a cover of the famous French song 'Ne me quitte pas'. I have to say ... nice try, Bic, but no cigar. But it's a pretty hard song to better, I'd say. Also 'Sway', 'Bursting through' (ahh, beautiful), 'Get some sleep' and 'She left on a Monday', as well as the ones I can't remember. SLoaM is actually the weakest song on "Beautiful Collision" if you ask me, but maybe I'm alone in that opinion.
She also had her hair cut in a much shorter "Cleopatra" style bob, if you can imagine that.
The second half was pretty much all of "Birds" with the full studio band, which was pretty wow. The first time I get to see Neil Finn in concert, heh. :) She also thanked Neil for "letting me drop his name EVERYWHERE".
She made a couple of jokes... she commented how great The Church playing "Under the milky way" at the Comm Games opening ceremony had been. Then she said, "We were thinking of inviting some New Zealand athletes [to come to her concert], but we didn't want to bum them out with our loser vibe." LOL. She also made fun of her mum being an Il Divo fan (who had apparently played there the previous night): adopts NZ accent "They're handsome, and they can sing too!" (pretty strange to hear a NZer adopt a NZ accent)
The encore was 'The be-all & end-all' and 'Drive'. (Hm maybe I forgot a song in the middle... not sure.)
The venue had all these attendants who were super-anal about photography. Of course pretty much everyone ignored them and took photos anyway (although what good your flash does 20+m away in a darkened hall is a mystery to me). One of them was like True/Prue from "Kath & Kim" incarnate. (Does NZ get this show? If you've seen this characters, you'll know it was pretty freaky. I couldn't figure out if she was putting it on or not. I think so, but then that's almost *more* freaky.)
OK now my opinion of "Birds" itself...
* Winning arrow - actually kind of bland IMO. not as strong as 'Sway' or 'Get some sleep'.
* Say after me - eh. tracks like this make me think Bic took her role in "Little fish" as a lounge singer to heart. ;)
* Listen - ++
* Birds - Very cool. Fantastic instrumentation (esp. piano) and I agree with Bic's assessment that birds are really "strange". So, wow.
* Ruby nights - Great, I love this. The backing vox are perfect and I love how low her voice gets. It has a real 'western' feel to it.
* No crying no more - borderline saccharine...lucky Bic can carry it.
* If I had you - I'm so tempted to just write this off. I can see it being a big wedding tune. But now I think it's a bit Bacharach-style 50's big ballad, and I don't hate them, they have their place... I just don't think I'll be able to stomach this every time I listen to this CD. :)
* Captured - excellent...sequel to Ruby nights.
* That's alright - also ++.
* Blue blue heart - so awesome and fun. backing vox again make this great. maybe the only tune I could see triple j playing. I should really just give up hoping for airplay, right...
* It's over - again the lounge singer vibe. well when I go through my next break-up I'll dive straight for this one.
This sounds pretty negative, but I'm impressed with how she's pushing herself, I just think she should stick with it. For that reason Birds, Ruby nights, Captured and Blue blue heart are my standouts, just because they're something new for her.
OK, you can trash my opinion now! :)