Friday, June 15, 2012

Roger Waters with The Wall Live in Atlanta, GA, USA (June 13, 2012)

Last Wednesday, in June 13th, 2012, my husband and I went to see the show of former Pink Floyd bassist Roger Waters. It was The Wall Live show, which is touring the world from September 2010. It was the second time I witnessed this outstanding high-tech visual music performance. The first one was in Moscow, Russia, in April 2011.

Like the most of The Wall Live shows, Atlanta show was held in a huge sports venue – Philips Arena. The tremendous white wall was partly built across the venue’s width before the show. The concert started slightly later than stated, but the delay was hardly noticeable. The venue looked almost full.

The show’s start with “In The Flesh?” was as always spectacular. In its culmination the stage was illuminated by intense pyrotechnic effects and the fire from the airplane crash into the side of the Wall.

Photo. In The Flesh?

During the first part of the show The Wall has been slowly built by construction crew, more and more separating the band on the stage from the audience. The last brick was laid by the end of the “Goodbye Cruel World” song with the last words by Roger Waters: “Good Bye”. The intermission then followed.

Photo. During “The Last Few Bricks” instrumental medley, when The Wall was almost complete.

The Wall, being a perfect plane for various visual content, embodied by modern projection technology, was the main character of the show. It was reflecting not only what was happening on the stage, but also the video of 1980 Pink Floyd show in London with Roger Waters singing “Mother”, fragments of 1982 The Wall movie, documentaries, multiple text and graphic messages to the audience. However, various high-edge 3D projections The Wall was a canvas for were the most impressive. The Wall was transforming into the building with columns, into the TV-set, into cities and streets. It was surrounded by flying birds or wriggling worms. It was rotating around its axis and exploding surrounded by bright colors of the sunny sky. Its bricks were detaching and flying into abyss…

The whole show was carrying important social messages from Roger Waters. Being a pacifist, Waters delivers an anti-war message in his show projecting documentary war pictures and videos on The Wall, which remind us of all the horrors wars bring. On his web site he asks people to send photographs of the loved ones who died in any war, and then projects these photographs with names and other short information on The Wall during the show to commemorate “the fallen ones”. The performance of songs “Vera” and “Bring The Boys Back Home” emphasize anti-war message of the show most of all.

The other message from Roger Waters is unity of people against controlling governments and corporations. This message appears in the song “Hey You” with words “Together we stand, divided we fall”. Various graphics on The Wall – starting from images of tyrannical leaders of the world’s history to the logos of corporations and currency symbols falling from the bomber plane like bombs – strongly support this message too. When singing the song “Mother” Roger Waters asked “Mother, should I trust the government?”, the answer “No F*cking Way” appeared on The Wall, which was immediately approved by the crowd in Atlanta and impressed us a lot, because it was not expected.

Photo. Mother

The show as always ended with an impressive destruction of The Wall along with the repeating “Tear down the wall!” exclamations from “The Trial” song. As the Wall was destroyed the images of happy girls waiving at the crowd appeared. 

Photo. The Trial

Some moments after all 12 people from the band, including Roger Waters, appeared on the stage in front of the destroyed Wall. They played and sang, and Waters introduced each musician as they were leaving the stage one by one. By the way, one of them was Roger’s son Harry who is playing Hammond organ, keyboards and accordion at The Wall Live show and who is a wonderful jazz pianist outside The Wall.

The Wall Live tour 2012 is going to have its last show on the 21st of July in Quebec, Canada. However, the tour might return to Europe in 2013 according to the Roger Waters interview for Rolling Stone magazine in 2011. Well, let’s hope more people get to see one of the most spectacular and powerful performances on Earth! By the way, forgot to mention, the sound in Atlanta was just perfect – my huge respect to engineers who worked on it!

Photo. Happy me after the show.

Until the next time!

No comments:

Post a Comment