w/ Support from Diane & The Deductibles
Canyon Club – Agoura Hills, CA – 5/24/19
This was my second time catching Berlin in concert. The first time was last July as part of one of the 80’s Weekend lineups (that included Blondie and Adam Ant). That night I proclaimed them as my favorite act of the evening…(PROOF!!!) and tonight reaffirmed my decision.
Even though they gained their fame a few decades ago, Berlin proved that they are indeed a contemporary act. The band don’t sound dated at all and by god if Terri Nunn hasn’t made a deal with devil to remain ageless… There were a few songs that she now said she sees with an older set of eyes and experiences and that they now have new meaning to her, but her voice and stage presence remain that of the singer who graced our MTV.
These recent shows are a in celebration of the 40th anniversary of the band. The lineup has evolved over the years and it seems to have settled on very familiar territory. Last July, Terri had founding member, John Crawford and guitarist, Dave Diamond rejoin the revamped lineup for the 80’s weekend show. It seems that they have now become permanent members of the band again which is rounded out by Keyboardist, Dave Schulz and drummer, Chris Olivas.
One thing is certain, they’re having a great time together. Lots of banter, and interaction with each other on stage…Their chemistry is very apparent.
Berlin played for close to two hours and threw everything but the kitchen sink into the setlist. They came out with a punch starting with a cover of Elton John’s “The Bitch Is Back” and launched into a bunch of their classics, such as “No More Words“, “The Metro” and “Masquerade“. We were also treated to some of their more recent material like “Animal” and the sultry “I Want You“. Kick ass covers of The Cult’s, “Sanctuary” (Which brought Terri into the crowd) and a “return the favor” cover of Hole’s, “Celebrity Skin” really got the packed Canyon Club audience rocking.
Other highlights of their set included “Sex (I’m A…)” dueting with John…
“Dancing in Berlin” which saw a large portion of the audience invited on stage to dance with the band…
…and of course their biggest hit from the movie Top Gun, “Take My Breath Away” which saw Terri singing the song while being escorted through the audience on her husband’s shoulders. He was rewarded with a big kiss.. (Tough job).
Another touching moment is during new song “Transcendence” dedicated to Terri’s mom who passed away. During the song, images and old movies of her mother are played on the screen adding a very emotional touch.
The whole band is amazing and fun to watch… Dave is great ripping out solos, John is steady and cool on bass and occasionally coming out to duet with Terri on “Sex…and “Fall“. Chris is animated and seems to be rocking out behind the kit for the whole set, and as well as the signature Berlin keyboard sound, Dave Schulz also adds some amazing harmonies.
The good news for locals is that Terri is indeed an Agoura Hills local, which means it’s never that far away until the next time Berlin hit the Canyon Club Stage.
Diane & The Deductibles
Diane & The Deductibles offer a true old school, bluesy rock vibe. Led by vocalist/guitarist, Diane Adams, their sound harkens back to some of the melodic rock bands of the 70’s. This isn’t a total surprise as the band is comprised of a few veteran rockers. Including Diane’s husband and former Air Supply bassist, Cliff Rehrig; the uber talented lead guitarist and founder of 80’s rock band, Hurricane, Robert Sarzo; Keith Lynch who has worked as a collaborator with Black Sabbath drummer, Bill Ward; and drummer, Ronnie Ciago, who has performed with such artists as, Graham Bonnet, Jaco Pastorius, Gene Simmons and The Riverdogs, to name a few.
Tonight’s support slot acted as a release party for their latest album, “Two“. Three of their five songs this evening came from the new release, “Sweet Love & Emotion“, “Frontline” and “What A Feeling“. The set was rounded out by two older D&TD songs, “In My Next Breath” and “Say What You Mean“. It was a relatively short set, but one that was sure to leave a lasting impression with everyone in attendance.
Diane & The Deductibles have been opening up for some name bands of late including The Guess Who, The Little River Band, Missing Persons as well as tonight’s headliner, Berlin. There are plenty of opportunities to check them out so be sure to get to a show early and catch them if you see them on the bill. Certainly a band who will be headlining their own shows shortly…
Diane & The Deductibles are:
Diane Adams – Lead vocals-Guitar
Cliff Rehrig – Bass & BVs
Robert Sarzo – Lead Guitar
Keith Lynch – Guitar & BVs
Ronnie Ciago – Drums