Toto live at The Royal Hospital, Chelsea
Toto Hold the Line with a regal set of classic soft-rock.
13 July, 2019.
By PAUL DAVIES.
As Toto tonight sang, “I bless the rains down in Africa”, on their ubiquitous smash hit Africa, boy, did the heavens open up and drop its summer rain on a dancing, cheering and indefatigable crowd at The Royal Hospital, Chelsea.
If West Coast titans Toto brought the rain, it was, in fact, a solid downpour of golden notes from a band of seasoned session musicians. Originally pooling together their top individual talents, they created their now legendary legacy which they are currently touring around Europe.
Donning a raggedy Top Hat, singer Joseph Williams was in fine voice. And stretching out their individual talents across a career spanning set, the entire band put on a master-class of musicianship; almost blowing away the dark and threatening clouds that lingered overhead.
Singing along to big hitters Hold The Line and Rosanna, the knowledgable crowd rejoiced in deep cuts English Eyes, Lion, Home of the Brave and Desert Theme Song; the panoramic musical anthem to the film Dune.
Playing a cover of Michael Jackson's Human Nature, most people in the know are aware of Toto's session work on Jackson’s Thriller album. And tonight they repeatedly sent shivers down the spine, especially guitarist Steve Lukather's scintillating solos, to salve the rain-soaked and sodden in the grounds of this historic Royal Hospital.
Even the Chelsea Pensioners, watching from their rooms overlooking the stage, were applauding along to these musical masters who defiantly played a molten hot show throughout the inclement weather.
"As sure as Kilimanjaro rises like Olympus above the Serengeti", the golden statue of Charles II, who founded the Royal Hospital, facing the stage would have granted his royal seal of approval to these master-craftsmen who played an almighty regal set of classic soft rock.