Boston Review

taken from: Boston Herald

No Doubt delivers Hella Good show

By Lauren Carter / Review
Monday, June 22, 2009

You could say they left No Doubt about their live-performance prowess.

For just over 90 minutes at the Comcast Center in Mansfield Saturday night, lead singer Gwen Stefani and her larger-than-life band mates ignited the venue as if their multiyear hiatus from music never was.

The dynamic, uber-stylish Stefani, now a 39-year-old mom with her own clothing line, could have passed for a 23-year-old fitness instructor as she sprinted across the stage, danced, pranced – and leading into “Just a Girl” – launched into a push-up session, all without compromising her vocals.

The band, now at work on their next project, hasn’t released a studio album since 2001’s “Rock Steady,” but apparently it’s only a matter of getting back into the ska-pop groove rather than trying to find it, as the show was a marriage of superb audio and visual detail.

A futuristic white set matched the band’s white get-ups, including the midriff-baring tank top that served as a window to Stefani’s chiseled abs. Bassist Tony Kanal and guitarist Tom Dumont played subtle, faux-hawked counterpoint to Stefani’s punk-feminine style while drummer Adrian Young performed in knee socks and underwear, later appearing in a tutu.

Yes, the look is as much a part of No Doubt’s cheeky, carefree appeal as their sound.

From the feisty opener “Spiderwebs,” the band – which included dreadlocked horn and keyboard players Stephen Bradley and Gabriel McNair – never faltered while Stefani cooed and worked the stage.

On the sinewy bass of “Hella Good,” the frenetic “Ex-Girlfriend” and the rap-infused “Hey Baby,” Stefani was all boundless energy. On mellow tracks “Don’t Let It Go Away,” “Simple Kind of Life” and the reggae-laced “Underneath It All,” she scaled it back and let swagger take a backseat to singing.

Stefani has had a successful solo career while the band took a break, but none of her hits surfaced Saturday; it was all about bringing No Doubt in all its facets back to the masses, from monster smash “Don’t Speak” to the synth-heavy cover of Talk Talk’s “It’s My Life.”

Judging by the capacity crowd’s thunderous demand for an encore, which included “Rock Steady” and “Sunday Morning,” the masses have missed them.

Opening act Paramore is a band modeled after No Doubt: melodic, punk-infused power pop featuring a dynamic frontwoman in Hayley Williams and an all-male band. The fivesome delivered a brilliant set that included the buoyant “Where the Lines Overlap” and their track from the vampire flick “Twilight,” “Decode.”

Author: Amy

I'm 32 years old and married to the best man on Earth! No Doubt is my favorite band, they inspire me everyday. I remember getting my first computer when I was 14 and wanting to make a website about them. Now, 18 years later, I'm a Computer Programmer/Web Designer and STILL making a website about them. I'd like to thank No Doubt for that!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *