New Zealand native Neil Finn and Aussie Paul Kelly are two of the most successful and admired singer/songwriters of their generation. They’ve hit the road together frequently over the years, including an acclaimed Australian tour in 2013 highlighted by a performance at the Sydney Opera House. That magical night is captured on two-CD set “Goin’ Your Way.”
A hit Down Under, the album was only available as a pricy import outside of New Zealand and Australia until now. Happily, the folks at Omnivore are bringing the 29-track set from a pair of consummate pros to the wider audience that the music deserves. The twosome tackle songs from their solo careers, as well as Finn’s early days in bands like Split Enz and Crowded House.
“I loved digging into Neil’s songs,” Kelly says. “A watch ticks and seems so easy but you peer into the mechanism and it’s a whole other world. It’s like that with his songs.”
“It’s a rare pleasure to learn the songs of another songwriter who you admire and to discover the way they work,” Finn adds. “Deceptively simple on the outside but intricate, intimate and considered all the way through. Paul Kelly is a great songwriter in every sense of the term.”
That mutual admiration and respect comes through in the music and makes for a terrific way to spend a couple hours. Among the many highlights here are performances of “Before Too Long,” “She Will Have Her Way,” “One Step Ahead,” “Message to My Girl,” “Better Be Home Soon,” “Don’t Dream It’s Over,” “Fall at Your Feet” and “Moon River.” Good stuff. (Jeffrey Sisk)