Maybe it's time for a heat wave in hell.
The Eagles, whose leader Don Henley once famously proclaimed would get back together "when hell freezes over," are still riding the reunion trail they embarked on back in 1994. At this point, the second incarnation of the band has been around longer than the first (1971-1980).
Enough is enough.
The group that flew into San Jose for the first of two shows at HP Pavilion looked and sounded pretty tired during much of its concert, which lasted more than three hours. The spark was especially missing during a half-dozen or so of the band's best-known hits. The result was a mediocre performance that didn't do justice to the Eagles' mighty legacy.
Some of that has to do with age. The Eagles' youngest member, Glenn Frey, will turn 62 in November.
"Check your tickets," Frey quipped to the crowd. "This is the Eagles Assisted Living Tour."
Yet, credit the band for taking a risk. Financially, the Eagles certainly didn't need to put out an album of new material, given that their 29-times-platinum "Greatest Hits (1971-1975)" is essentially tied with Michael Jackson's "Thriller" as the biggest-selling album in U.S. history. Still, the group recorded its first full-length studio album in 28 years, 2007's "Long Road Out of Eden," and the album has sold millions of copies across the globe. That's quite an accomplishment — most new studio offerings from such Eagles' peers as Paul McCartney and Elton John don't sniff the upper reaches of the charts.
After opening the show with the concert staple "Seven Bridges Road," the Eagles showcased the newer tracks. Unfortunately, only a handful stood up to the classic '70s cuts. It didn't help that the rough sound mix mucked up the crucial harmonies on "How Long" and distorted the once-compelling dueling guitars at the end of "Hotel California."
The mix wasn't bad enough to disguise the dreadful lyrics, full of heavy-handed social commentary in "Busy Being Fabulous," or the painfully earnest adult contemporary vibe of "I Don't Want To Hear Any More."
The Eagles recovered some momentum as they coasted through a steady succession of hits, including "Peaceful Easy Feeling," "Boys of Summer" and — by far, the best of the lot — "Witchy Woman." But even these offerings suffered from subpar lead vocals from all four band members.
The second set was easier on the ears, mostly through an adjusted sound system. Joe Walsh finally showed up and played some real lead guitar. He also was given plenty of turns on the microphone, but his voice — never a strong point — has deteriorated to the point where such former gems as "Walk Away" and "Life's Been Good" felt like wasted efforts.
The strongest moments of the night came from Henley, which wasn't a surprise. The Eagles could lose any of the other three members and probably still fill arenas. Without Henley, they'd be playing county fairs.
Let's hope it never gets to that point.
Read Jim Harrington's Concert Blog at http://blogs.mercurynews.com/aei/category/concerts.