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POP MUSIC REVIEWS : SIMPLE MINDS’ HUMANITARIAN ROCK

Simple Minds opened the Greek Theatre summer season Tuesday night with a show that was uplifting for both the Scottish group’s message of hope as well as its often stirring, sometimes majestic music.

Like Bruce Springsteen, U2 and too few others, Simple Minds uses its rock stardom to further the humanitarian ideals expressed in the group’s songs. And it does so without sounding naive or preachy.

Despite his strong feelings (proceeds from the concert and several others on the band’s current tour are being donated to Amnesty International, a human rights organization), Kerr didn’t operate from a soap box at the Greek. The only mention of the cause from the stage came in a brief dedication of the song “Ghost Dancing.”

Otherwise, the evening was dedicated to music--a rousing performance that had most of the near-capacity crowd (including Kerr’s spouse, a buoyant Chrissie Hynde) on its feet throughout the nearly two-hour affair.

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Though the staging and lighting seemed overdone and some of the material suffers from sameness, the band’s exuberant playing and Kerr’s warm persona gave even such overly familiar songs as “Don’t You Forget About Me” and “Alive and Kicking” new life. This is a band that makes you proud of rock ‘n’ roll.


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