Reviews: Eric Clapton, Phil Collins, Diana Ross & More

This week, for your reading enjoyment, we have compiled critical reviews of live performances from Eric Clapton in New York; Phil Collins in Toronto; Diana Ross in Ottawa, Ontario; Foo Fighters in Phoenix; Florence + The Machine in Charlotte, N.C.; and Godsmack / Shinedown in Spokane, Wash.
Eric Clapton
Greg Allen /
– Eric Clapton
Eric Clapton plays Madison Square Garden Arena in NYC March 19.
Eric Clapton @ Madison Square Garden Arena in New York, New York, Oct. 7 – “On Sunday night Clapton tackled his catalog of classics like a man who has something to prove. While he may have lost some of the spark he showed in the late ’80s and early ’90s — and many fans were overheard wondering before the show whether he still had the goods — he wowed crowd with a stellar set in what could be, but hopefully isn’t, a farewell.” – Jeff Cornell / Variety
Phil Collins @ Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, Ontario, Oct. 11 – “The 67-year-old British musician, who has come out of a self-imposed retirement, blamed “a back operation and a f***ed-up foot,” for his frail appearance at the Scotiabank Arena on Thursday night before he sat down in a swivelling black leather office chair. ‘I’m going to be sitting down a lot tonight – but we’re going to have fun,’ Collins explained. And he was – true to his word – still in good voice and humour.” – Jane Stevenson / Toronto Sun
Diana Ross @ National Arts Centre in Ottawa, Ontario, Oct. 10 – “It was Ross’ first time performing in Ottawa in almost three decades, and the occasion warranted royal treatment for both the diva and her fans. …
“The singer’s smile lit up the room and her voice rang true, the years melting away with every hit. ‘If you know these songs, sing along,’ Ross said, sailing into a string of Supremes favourites that included ‘Baby Love,’ ‘Stop! In the Name of Love,’ ‘Come See About Me’ and ‘You Can’t Hurry Love’.” – Lynn Saxberg / The Kingston Whig Standard
Foo Fighters @ Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix, Ariz., Oct. 8 – “From the time he ran on stage at Talking Stick Resort Arena, promising fans “It’s gonna be a long night, mother (expletives)” to the final notes of “Everlong” more than two hours later, the man’s enthusiasm never wavered.” – Ed Masley / Arizona Republic
Florence + The Machine
Scott Legato /
– Florence + The Machine
DTE Energy Music Theatre in Clarkston, Mich.
Florence + The Machine @ Spectrum Center in Charlotte, N.C., Oct. 3 – “It was a little weird, too, when Welch implored fans explicitly to turn to someone they had never met and to tell that person “I love you.” She’d warmed people up for this by asking everyone to hold hands early in the show and then later to embrace, but most, I think, assumed they could get away with doing those two things with their friends.” – Theoden Janes / The Charlotte Observer
Godsmack / Shinedown @ Spokane Arena in Spokane, Wash., Oct. 7 – “Godsmack took the stage with fire, explosions and a seamless setlist representing every album they’ve released. Each song brought a new wave of enthusiasm to the arena with pyrotechnical outbursts added for emphasis.
“The spectrum of emotion Shinedown could evoke ran from a primal desire to get up and start a fight, many of which playfully broke out in the stagefront crowd at intervals through both bands’ sets, to a deeper compassion for the personal struggles of each of the musicians outlined in the lyrics of ‘Get Up’ and “Second Chance.” Shinedown’s use of laser lights, mirrors and coordinated fireworks was so well timed that it seemed as if Smith was magicing them up at his discretion.” – Stephanie Hammett / The Spokesman-Review