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Jeff Lynne’s ELO dazzled at Madison Square Garden (pics, review, setlist)

Jeff Lynne says he is using the name Jeff Lynne’s ELO instead of just “ELO” to differentiate from a sea of tribute acts. There was no doubt this was the real deal at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday night (8/21), as Lynne and his current lineup of the band brought the Orchestra (and many electric lights) to full technicolor life. They flat-out sounded amazing and if you dig what ELO do, and chances are you like at least one of their many hits, the 13-piece band were seriously impressive. The strings, the multi-part harmonies, the many many classic songs.

In the hit department, it was pretty hard to argue with the setlist that included almost everything you’d want to hear at an ELO show, and the early part of the night included two of my favorite songs, “Evil Woman” and “Showdown.” There was only one song from from the 2015’s Alone in the Universe (“When I Was a Boy”), and they did a Travelling Wilburys song, too (“Handle With Care” with backing vocalist/guitarist Iain Hornal doing a pretty good Roy Orbison). While I wish we’d gotten “Xanadu” (which they are playing on this tour) and “Strange Magic,” we got pretty much everything else, from “Telephone Line” to “Rockaria!” to “Don’t Bring Me Down,” “Turn to Stone” and “Mr. Blue Sky,” plus a couple hits I’d forgotten about (“Wild West Hero,” the disco-era “Shine A Little Love”).

Jeff Lynne, who still sounds great, noted that it was almost 40 years to the day since ELO had played MSG, and clearly the packed house was glad to have them back. Pictures from the night (including openers Dawes) are in the gallery above, and the setlist and a few videos from the show are below.

The tour stays parked at MSG tonight and tickets are still available.

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SETLIST: Jeff Lynne’s ELO @ Madison Square Garden 8/21/2018
Standin’ in the Rain
Evil Woman
All Over the World
Showdown
Do Ya
When I Was a Boy
Livin’ Thing
Handle With Care (Traveling Wilburys)
Rockaria!
Can’t Get It Out of My Head
10538 Overture
Shine a Little Love
Wild West Hero
Sweet Talkin’ Woman
Telephone Line
Don’t Bring Me Down
Turn to Stone
Mr. Blue Sky

Encore:
Roll Over Beethoven (Chuck Berry cover)

photos by Dana Distortion

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