Centrepointe Theatre hosted the return of Saga February 7th
Saga who last played Ottawa in 2007, are on tour to support their new album 20/20. For a show I was uncertain about, Saga quickly hit the ball out of the park showing they do their brand of progressive rock as well as anyone!
Michael Sadler was back behind the microphone with band mates Jim Gilmour, Ian and Jim Crichton and Brian Doerner on drums.
The show started with Sadler clearly in control, kicking the dust of any myth he or Saga were a band living in the past. Back arched and arms outstretched (as if Iggy Pop) Sadler strutted poignantly about the stage throughout the show. His vocals were crisp and precise, with great range and sustain.
Jim Gilmour made is clear through his play that keyboards are still very much a part of who Saga is, while Jim Crichton cut the night up on lead guitar (very impressed with his ability). Key song writer Ian Crichton kept pace on Bass and keyboards, showing creativity and flow as a moved around on stage.
Doerner played a solid outing on drums. Being a drummer I hate comparisons, but Simon Phillips of Toto fame and Brian are similar in style (nice solo Mr Drummer!)
The audience knew Saga, and in quite moments yelled for favorites. I wasn’t sure at points if Sadler was pleased, confused or overwhelmed? Nice to see he didn’t shut the audience down, handling the banter well and making sure the hits were played while keeping the show on track.
Best known for a string of hits in the 80’s Wind Him Up, On The Loose, The Flyer, Scratching The Surface (all of which were played).
Saga is supporting a new album 20/20 which I am pleased to say they loaded the show heavily with. I would highly recommend getting into 20/20, songs like Six Feet Under, Anywhere you Wanna Go, Another Day out Sight, One of These Days, to name a few are very good songs.
Saga is a very talented group, who play with tons of energy. But for a few minor issues with sound and light, the show was flawless and left the audience in high spirits and satisfied.
I hope Saga come back for an encore performance in the not too distant future!
By Tom Kelly
Mouse in a Maze
Careful Where You Step
You’re Not Alone
Spin It Again
Six Feet Under
Scratching the Surface
Tired World (Chapter 6)
On the Loose
Wind Him Up
Encore – Don’t Be Late (Chapter 2)