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Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Volume 39, Number 16, July 12, 1976.

Little Feat: Wellington Town Hall. Sunday 4th July

Little Feat: Wellington Town Hall. Sunday 4th July.

Little Feat, long acclaimed by the music press as the greatest thing to happen to rock and roll in many years, won over a Wellington audience with a display of most inventive precision rock. The two concerts were two hours late due to several delays in getting the massive load of equipment down from Auckland. The wait, however, was worth it and Little Feat delivered the goods.

On stage they play straight and hard; none of the rock-star-pissing-on-the-audience syndrome. Just good, hard, musicianship. Lowell George center stage stood there in Levis and floral shirt pulling out the type of guitar licks that have sent Mick Jagger, Jimmy Page and all other rock afficiendos into rapturous applause. He sang like he meant it, as if he personified the lyrics.

Paul Barrere effortlessly kept up the rhythm and then would change to lead while Lowell George took his turn on the rhythm. The guitar work between the two of them was inventive at all times, not once did they indulge in a lead break fight as is the tendency for many bands with two guitarists.

Bill Payne's keyboards were lush and well mixed and he displayed a variety of styles from a gothic down-south boogie rhythm to classical pieces. He managed to look all the time like a PhD student; unruffled while turning out some great runs on the boards. His lengthy solo on Tripe Face Boogie' led into two superb solos from Barrere and George.

Feat went through the whole gamut of their music. A lengthened version of 'Dixie Chicken' had the crowd up and stamping for more and the unruffled Feats did just that, pushing on into 'Cold, Cold, Cold' which George sang with real feeling.

Their music is so alive and vibrant, totally personified in Ken Gradney's animated prancing while playing the most fluid of bass lines. His thunderous bass introduction to 'Romance Dance' was greeted with enthusiastic applause and Paynes electric piano/synthesiser tripping notes soared with the whole band driving on like there was no end. Sam Claytons conga playing was so totally in tune with the funky drumming of Rich Hayward that nothing could fail.

The Last Record Album seemed to be the strength of their set really, with a fair sprinkling of songs from 'Sailing Shoes' and 'Feats Don't Fail Me Now'. 'All That You Dream' was a real high spot as everything fitted in. By now the band were sailing just like that shoe. Payne and Barrere put the vocals in on this their own song. Then their version of Allan Toussants New Orleans boogie song drove me all nostalgic.

This basically is what is so good about these boys. They can lift you, drop you and make you feel so good in the space, of two hours.

'Day or Night' sums it up all right, and they did, with such feeling, even a shade slower than it is on the album;

"Oh the city she makes
something your soul to feel
floating just like a leaf
in the wind"

The mixing was great and the lyrics were right up front and the fine balance was maintained right throughout; The sign of a really great rock-n-roll band tried and true!

For those of you who missed it I really do feel sorry, as what was presented by Little Feat in the Town Hall was true rock and roll with all its many moods, brilliantly played by the funkiest band in the States.

The crowd went beserk and they just had to come on again; 'Feats Don't Fail Me Now' with its brilliant twangy guitar rifts was just what the Doctor ordered, oh and what a version! Half way through it George stops is musically the boys whip up the chant "Roll right through the night".... the crowd responded.... and one by one the band departs from stage the crowd up front singing "Roll right through the night' those up back calling for more .... but we Feats fans knew they didn't leave a song unfinished! Sure enough the band could still be heard singing that line out out back and as they drifted back on stage the crowd went up on their feet clapping and dancing; Lowell George gently walking the stage drooping his mike into the crowd while the chant of "roll on right through the night" was sung by the now frenzied Feat-o-maniacs!

God, living rock'n roll... the true moment! 'Willin' just had to follow.... and it did. Lowell George up front strumming acoustic guitar with the spot on him:

"I been warped by the rain,
driven by
the snow drunk and dirty
don't you know
and I'm still willin".

The highlight of the concert.... simply beautiful.. the applause was well deserved from a now rapt audience. "Teenage Nervous Breakdown" came as the last number, tight and the living incarnation of rock and roll it put the icing on the cake.

Our into the crisp winter air after the show and everyone was six inches off the ground.......thanks Feat!

— Grant Cairncross