Good times are to be had at packed nostalgia act fests like “The Lost 80s” show at the Greek this Sunday, but we prefer smaller bills that allow our favorite artists to showcase more of their material before getting swept off the stage for the next act. “The Letting it Go Show,” this Friday and Saturday, features two of the most dynamic acts from the totally awesome era coming together for a night of sensual sing-alongs and flashback frolic.
Berlin, led by Terri Nunn have proven themselves to be an enduringly engaging live act, from slots at the past two Cruel World festivals to smaller solo dates around the country. Along with bassist John Crawford, and keyboard player David Diamond, Nunn and Berlin have survived past their heyday thanks mostly to the platinum-selling debut Pleasure Victim. Fans of a certain age who listened to KROQ here in Southern California will never forget the naughty allure of “Sex, I’m a…” while “Masquerade” and “The Metro” remain crowd-pleasers on any new wave playlist. And then there’s the stirring “Take My Breath Away” from Top Gun, which they recently released in orchestral form on their latest, Strings Attached.
Sure to complement Berlin’s emotive moments, headliners Boy George and Culture Club bring their own blend of soulful ballads and mid-tempo dance hits to the mix. It’s become more and more evident just how ahead of his time CC’s androgynous frontman was, and not just in terms of sexual identity, but vocally and lyrically. Time really is like a clock in the heart, especially when it comes to music. And heart is what you’ll always get from a George performance, whether he’s singing old faves like “Do You Really Want To Hurt Me,” “Miss Me,” and “I’ll Tumble For Ya,” or paying homage to artists who inspired him (fingers crossed he fancies a Bowie cover or two during the set as he has at past L.A. shows).
Culture Club and Berlin, at 6 p.m. on Friday-Saturday, Aug. 25-26, at the Hollywood Bowl.
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