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Hall & Oates

Thirty-one years after their debut, singer-songwriters Hall & Oates have settled into an enviable, people-pleasing niche. In concert, they sharply balanced back-in-stride recent singles "Man on a Mission" and "Forever for You" with their finest rafted hits ("Rich Girl," "I Can't Go for That," "Out of Touch") and were supported by a skin-tight quintet.

Thirty-one years after their debut, singer-songwriters Hall & Oates have settled into an enviable, people-pleasing niche. In concert, they sharply balanced back-in-stride recent singles “Man on a Mission” and “Forever for You” (from “Do It for Love”) with their finest rafted hits (“Rich Girl,” “I Can’t Go for That,” “Out of Touch,” “Say It Isn’t So”) and were supported by a skin-tight quintet.

Their choice of covers emphasized duets such as Mel & Tim’s Stax classic “Starting All Over Again” and the Righteous Brothers’ “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling.” Indeed, second tenor Oates — often chided for his second fiddle role — stepped up nicely on those numbers and more: vocally on the New Radicals’ “Someday We’ll Know” and, instrumentally, with the guitar solo on “Adult Education.”

Daryl Hall remains the duo’s star, though the sweet passion he conveys in his falsetto and tenor is undermined live by his geeky inability to dance, and he occasionally overdoes it with the soul man histrionics. Ditching his guitar, he truly came to life on “Cab Driver” from his solo CD, “Can’t Stop Dreaming.” One only wishes he’d set aside a quieter place in the show for “Sara Smile,” “She’s Gone” and the sexy “One on One” instead of wielding them like sledgehammers with extended jam endings.

That aside, the vets truly know their soul stuff. For their third encore, they closed with Barry White’s “Can’t Get Enough of Your Love,” a fitting tribute to the man.

Hall & Oates

Wiltern Theater; 2,300 seats; $68 top

  • Production: Presented by KOST-FM and AT&T. Reviewed Aug. 15, 2003
  • Cast: <b>Band:</b> Daryl Hall, Johan Oates, Charlie De Chant, T-Bone Wolk, Jeff Catania, John Korba, Michael Braun.