The Church, Blue Sky Divide

April 2nd, 2010
The Coach House
San Juan Capistrano, CA

From Glendale Ca, Blue Sky Divide opened the show with a thirty-minute acoustic set. The set featured songs from the debut self produced CD Start Of Things. They play a fun quick getting-to-know-them kind of a set. This show had some personal songs and other toe tapers. If you are into singer-songwriter duets like Simon & Garfunkel, Lowen & Navarro or The Williams Brothers, this was a really great set enabling you to kick back and enjoy a nice dinner or a cold bear with. They did explain some of the songs and gave a few hints that they couldn’t believe that they were opening for The Church and were very excited to be doing so. Some of the songs in tonight’s show were Charmed Life, Mary Ellen and Follow – tracks from the album that were played very smoothly. The newer songs were more heartfelt and showed off the strong writing in their song style like the opener song Breakdown, Snake Charmer and the closing sensitive number Sway.

With two million and one albums! Six thousand concerts, four drummers, nine nervous breakdown, one plane crash, two car crashes, six stolen guitars, ten daughters, three sons, twenty one thousand and three broken guitar strings, nine thousand and one blisters, thirteen thousand nine hundred forty sever arguments, nine overdoses, fourteen managers, fifty five record companies, with also three thousand seven hundred fifty two moments of ever growing creative magic, The Church have given us thirty years of musical heaven. Not only did the band play for nearly three hours with a short break, but it was also done in two sets. The stretch out was great to have in the middle of this long set of songs. They picked one song from each album that they have recorded over the thirty years to play. Given also to each person in attendance for this tour was a professional program colored booklet and a free CD of the newest single called Deadman’s Hand from the latest CD # 23. This special single is only available at this time during the twenty-two shows that they are doing here in the USA.

This acoustic intimate show contained both the band playing acoustic and giving out funny anecdotes of humor and understanding where some of the songs came from.  They also gave a brief history behind when they recorded each project. They even included songs from way back in their early days of 1980, playing Tear It All Away.

These jazzy four cats exchanged humorous riff raff banter to make the show really enjoyable. There were several difficulties and lots of video cameras around filming so maybe there will be a DVD around of this great tour released later on. Some of the great songs heard during tonight’s show were: Comedown, Almost With You, Unguarded Moment and Under The Milky Way.

If you look carefully on Youtube, you will find Smashing Pumpkins doing a cover of The Church song Reptile.  Not only did The Church do an acoustic version of Reptile but during the encore for this evening they did Disarm by Smashing Pumpkins. Watch for this gem on Youtube sometime I bet.

Hopefully you catch them this time around for an intimate evening, enjoying a laid back trip though The Church and their entire history. Thanks to Steve Kilbey, Marty Willson-Piper, Peter Koppes and Tim Powles for such a grand night of music bliss.

(Review and The Church photos by Jonathan D. Wright)

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