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Robert Leslie
Robert Leslie

September 3rd, 2002, 8:51 am #1

Hi Gang, Someone called Rainer posted this on the German board and I thought it should get wider readership.

Diamond is more smooth than Rough

Neil Diamond, Earls Court

David Smyth

EVERY gesture Neil Diamond makes is done very slowly. On the first night of three London shows, he made
long, theatrical sweeps with his arms, had incredibly drawn-out sessions of brow-mopping, and blew kisses
that would have taken about half an hour to reach their intended recipient.

He was the eye of the storm. I have never seen so many middle-aged women lose all sense of decorum so
quickly. It helped that plenty of songs, such as Hello again, Love on the rocks and the riotous Beautiful
Noise - all have the title in their first line, enabling speedy audience recognition and thus allowing
more time for screaming.

Diamond is into audience participation, turning everyone into his personal backing vocalist for a protracted,
fantastic Sweet Caroline.

However, there was a strange moment when he sang Girl You'll be a woman soon to a teenage volunteer,
but did not invite her on to the stage. Instead, he dangled his hand down to her over the edge, like
a gnome fishing in a garden pond.

Inevitably, a few sluggish tracks from last year's Three Chord Opera album made the bar staff a bit busier,
but dotted among timeless hits as Cracklin Rosie and Cherry Cherry there where too many diamonds to notice
the rough.

Thier url is


September 3rd, 2002, 3:37 pm #2

Good review. I had to laugh when the author described GYBWS as Neil like a gnome fishing in a garden pond! A lot of visuals come to mind when I think of Neil but gnome isn't one of them. But I did see a photo somewhere where Neil had to really stretch. I wonder if it wouldn't be better to bring the person up on stage. That would also take care of anyone trying to "storm" the stage, as I read that in a post sometime back.

I would agree a fair assessment of Neil is more diamonds than rough. This reviewered had a nice balanced article.