Jeff Lynne's ELO, 2016 review: Glastonbury Festival, UK

From Summerset Live

Glastonbury 2016 - REVIEW Jeff Lynne's ELO, Pyramid Stage, SUNDAY

If ever the weather failed to match the musical mood a band evokes, it happened at 4pm on Sunday afternoon at Glastonbury.
The Bowie flashmob which preceded Jeff Lynne's ELO got a light sprinkling but by the time the legends got on stage, it was a full dousing.
That the rain had no bearing whatsoever on the enjoyment of the set - from those who grew up with the records in the 1970s, to those who had their parent's infuse their childhoods with the LPs on repeat, to those discovering it for the the first time - was testament to the performance

And by the time Mr. Blue Sky was defiantly sung against menacingly grey clouds, Jeff Lynne had the crowd eating out of his hand.
It was a greatest hits display, lyrics coming to the lips of those watching almost unbidden. Don't bring Me Down, Evil Woman, Telephone Line and Living Thing all features in what was the band's debut set at the festival.
It's been a long time coming and when it did, it was note-perfect and meticulously delivered. Perhaps some might find fault with Lynne's desire to smooth any rough edges but the legendary band clearly wanted to secure its place in Legends slot folklore. And Jeff Lynne's ELO did just that.

Jeff Lynne's ELO keep the party percolating nicely at Glastonbury - review

From The Telegraph

Neil McCormick, music critic
26 JUNE 2016

Whatever Jeff Lynne's copious talents, weather forecasting is not among them. “Sun is shinin' in the sky, there ain't a cloud in sight, it's stopped raining,” he sang beneath leaden clouds and incessant drizzle. Fortunately Glastonbury's sodden revellers were prepared to defy the evidence of our own senses and bellow out from beneath our waterproofs and umbrellas, “Everybody's in a play, don't you know it's a beautiful day!”

Lynne's Electric Light Orchestra occupied what has become informally known as Glastonbury's Legend spot, a traditional vintage Sunday afternoon singalong where some long-serving showbusiness veteran is summoned from pop's back catalogue to remind us all of the tunes we had almost forgotten how much we loved.

It seemed a perfect fit, even if Mr. Blue Sky drew the worst weather of the festival so far. Lynne demonstrated that he has the musicianship, the band and the songs to warm the soggiest heart, although the somewhat reserved 69-year-old doesn't seem to have picked up much stagecraft during his decades in the business.

Last year, Lionel Richie's dazed shock and delight at the warm reception of Glastonbury's massive counter-culture crowd contributed enormously to the sheer pleasure of his set. Lynne, on the other hand, performed as if he was still on the midlands working men's club circuit where he learned his chops.

“Here's one you can bounce around and jump up and down to,” he promised in a flat Brummie accent, gazing apparently unimpressed across a vast sea of flags. You half expected him to add: “Could the owner of a green mud covered tractor return to his vehicle because you're blocking the portaloos, thanks?”

For the most part Lynne let the music do the talking and the crowd do the singing. Or try to anyway. Catchy as they are, many of his songs have a melodic scale too wide for karaoke, with the audience trailing unconvincingly whenever Lynne and his backing vocalists would suddenly rise up to falsetto notes. The “Woo-hoo”s of Don't bring Me Down were more Glastonbury's speed.

If ELO never quite hit the heights of former Glastonbury legends on a day when Mr. Blue Sky resolutely refused to respond to their summons, they did enough to keep the party percolating nicely. “You were fabulous,” Lynne insisted at the end, with all the enthusiasm of a man addressing bored stragglers from the Bingo for the thousandth time in his career. We were, indeed.


Evil Woman
All Over the World
When I Was a Boy
Livin' Thing
10538 Overture
Shine a Little Love
Wild West Hero
Telephone Line
Turn to Stone
Don't Bring Me Down
Sweet Talkin' Woman
Mr. Blue Sky
Roll Over Beethoven
(Chuck Berry cover)