Just back at my friends house after the very WET gig. Its been nice for two days and then 2 hrs before the gig it PISSED down big style, when I was walking to the stadium. However it did stop about 30 mins into the concert.
I cant be bothered to go into detail now, but all I can say is its THE best stage setup ive EVER seen - FANTASTISCHE.
Never say the setlist as I wanted to be surprised, and was I. Lots of older songs, including FUCKING RIPPLES.
However, Ive got to say that doing older songs nowadays doesnt work as they got very weak reception from the "fans", however shit like IT was cheered crazily. Put it this way, they played Ripples and the crowd all around me went to the bar or toilet ! No BULLSHIT. Fucking really annoyed me. Hold on my heart got a better response than FoF -
Special Genesis tour beer glasses (plastic though, but nice souvenir)
Los Endos - Awesome
Very surprisingly for me (as I hate it) was I know what you like
Ruthers looked a knob in his cravat
Daryl looked liked a convict
Banks shows no emotion
Domino was ace
Home by the sea
In the cage bombed
and Strangest thing was playing Carpet crawlers after IT which went down a storm - the place went dead.
I honestly didnt think I would enjoy it, but MUCH better than I thought.
Overall, they played less new shit than I thought.
Now really looking forward to Paris where Im on the flat instead of in the stands.
Anyway Henning how come you didnt repond to my before gig beer invite ? I was ON MY OWN ALL NIGHT - CHEERS
You Yanks will enjoy it.
First of all, the excitement and anticipation before the show was great to see. With respect to Helsinki and Herning, I always felt that the band were warming up for this night as the "real" tour opener and to me it seemed that way. Even a huge thunderstorm and lightening couldn't dampen the spirits of the fans who had come from all different parts of Northern Europe.
Huddled underneath the bar umbrellas, outside the north stand, is where Sarah and I had a couple of drinks while we chatted among other fans. As we walked over to the stadium the rain still came down in buckets!
Once inside, the adrenalin really started to pump. We were both becoming rather emotional actually as we had both been waiting so long to share this time at the concerts together. We'd already heard the echoes of NO SON OF MINE in the soundcheck and the charge of emotion was incredible!
So, the show began and the band walked on stage under a huge canopy of the AOL Arena and overcast, blackened skies. Something good was about to happen - you could feel it in the air!
Then the roar as the guys sat behind their instruments and launched into BEHIND THE LINES - DUKE'S END! A magnificent way to start the show and a real pointer as to which direction this gig/tour will take. Also, a personal pleasure for me, as it was this same opener that introduced me to seeing Genesis live back on the 1981 Abacab tour. Four minutes of powerful instrumental later, we rose to clap the beat of TURN IT ON AGAIN. Unbelievable. Tears of joy started to well up as we realised, in unison - the boys are back!
A stunning and superbly delivered NO SON OF MINE was followed by LAND OF CONFUSION and it was plain to me that even the newer hit orientated songs were sounding fantastic, Phil really getting behind the former.
Phil said his usual "Good evenings" to the fans and then it was on into "some of that old shit". This version of IN THE CAGE is darker and slightly less vigorous than older ones but I think it benefits from it. The second half of it, especially, caught a great groove and powered along. I would have to say that this turned out to be definitely one of the highlights of the evening for both of us. They then segued into CINEMA SHOW and all was well in the world.
A 2 minute snippet of DUKE'S TRAVELS continued the instrumental theme and kept up the speedy pace but, it has to be said, did suffer from the lack of vocal. It also seemed to merge into AFTERGLOW all too quickly too, not leaving enough room in between to breath, so to speak.
The lights were now beginning to show their full strength and although they used the traditional purple "glow", I think the effect at the "and I would search everywhere" bit was a tad less dramatic than previous tours. That said, musically, this was dreamland! 3, 4, 5 years ago, who could have dreamed that we would be sat watching this classic song again in all it's glory. Needless to say, a standing ovation followed.
HOLD ON MY HEART was next and it sounded superb, if truth be told. This song and the one following it; HOME BY THE SEA, had you asking - "have these guys really been away that long?!" The powerful 2nd half was as mighty as ever and I noticed Mike having a little smile over at Tony at the guitar solo part, referring to his mistake from the day earlier! In fact, out of them all, I would say it looks as though Mike is having the best time of it at the moment. He seems to be loving having that doubleneck over his shoulders once again and knowing in himself that that stance/image is as iconic to Genesis as Rick Wakeman's stacked up keyboards are to Yes. Couple that to his "Trick era scarf wearing attire" and you could say that he is taking this trip down memory lane in the right spirit.
And as for memory lane - we are whisked along again into some 70's highlights as a gorgeous FOLLOW YOU FOLLOW ME is sung with Phil behind his kit. I had a great side-on view of this moment and loved watching Phil's moves throughout the tune. The video to the tune came into my mind and acted as another reminder (as if it were needed) that this is GENESIS in front of my eyes again - the same guys that we've watched, listened to and loved for years and years.
The song ended properly and after a few seconds pause the band powered into the instrumental section of FIRTH OF FIFTH. I actually don't mind one bit that the full version isn't played. I don't think it would fit into the scale of this show actually. A nice note of interest here is that Daryl has tempered his guitar solo down slightly and the song both flows and rocks in equal measures now. The crescendo and peak of the tune is worth the entrance fee on it's own and as always it doesn't fail to shake the foundations! It also doesn't fail to bring out an air-drum moment in me too!
I KNOW WHAT I LIKE also turns out to be one of the highlights of the evening too. The skies are black now and the lights and the screen have really taken over. The images of Peter and Steve, as well as the "the way we were" ones of Tony, Mike and Phil, bring a warm feeling of nostalgia to proceedings. This song too is a full 8 minute workout and not in medley form like some feared. In fact this whole middle section of the show is great and has you wondering what other goodies are coming next in the well-balanced set.
Well, the answer is MAMA!
I must admit, I had my reservations when I heard that they were intending to include this one in the show. I worried about Phil reaching those high bits. I needn't have bothered. Kiwidave, my friend, if you are reading this, you will need to arrange for two men either side of you to keep you from falling over with delirium and dizziness, mate. Along with final song in the show, this was my favourite song of the whole evening for the simple reason that it convinced me that this IS going to be their best ever tour. Once they are 5 or 6 shows in and fully firing on all cylinders, they will be awesome! Not that they weren't tonight of course and you could almost hear the audible change as the gig kicked into another gear at this point. This was also the first song in the show where they introduced the extendable sails/webbs above the screen.
It's just a pity Phil's memory decided to click into another gear though too as on the next song; RIPPLES, he slipped up with a few of the words again. Tut Tut! What it didn't fail to do though was bring me (and I'm sure many others) to tears. I never thought I would again see the day when I would see such a beautiful and romantic song like this performed at a Genesis concert. they wouldn't have even thought about playing such gems as this in the days of the Invisible Touch and We Can't Dance tours. This song made my night even if we will hear better renditions of it during the coming tour ...
And then something happened that really surprised me. I actually loved the "Invisible Touch section of the show" that followed. I think this was maybe due to the fact that I was thinking to myself "I've had what I wanted. Now let's sit back and enjoy the rest of it". THROWING IT ALL AWAY did turn out to be mine and Sarah's loo break but it was out of necessity, not choice. We caught most of the song anyway as we rushed back to our seats in the side stand. DOMINO is miles better live than it is on the studio album and now with the lightshow on full and spectacular display, the power level seemed to rise yet again. A really innovative and absorbing drum duet followed that and I would say it is probably the best one they've ever done. Starting off playing on stools, they then sloped away and re-convened to their drum stools as each section of the piece took on a faster tempo than the last. Eventually and inevitably they collided into the beast that is LOS ENDOS! and for me the night was complete. It felt like a well-rounded and proper Genesis show.
Prior to the show and once the setlist had been announced, I would have said that TONIGHT, TONIGHT, TONIGHT should have been left off the list. Not so, now that I've seen it. The mood and lead into INVISIBLE TOUCH is perfect for this show and provides a very good show stopper.
Heck, I even thought I CAN'T DANCE sat neatly as the first encore and it re-awoke some of the bewildered-looking folk that sat around looking bemused during the drum-based instrumentals. But for me, those sorts of sing-along, hand-clap tunes had been in the minority this time.
All that remained was for Phil to give a few nice words and a nod to their past when introducing the old classic CARPET CRAWLERS. I love this song. It has always been in my Genesis top 10. Moreover, I think the guys love it too. It's one of the old songs that I firmly believe Phil can "get behind" and he does the song and the GENESIS legacy proud on this. It is also sooooooooo very sweet too that an old classic ends the show in reverent fashion like this, acting almost as a quiet and hushed reminder of what Genesis REALLY stands for ...... emotion and beauty.
Roll on the rest of the tour.