[Mistakes made during] "Siberian khatru" again. This time all goes well until Chris and Billy start singing. For some reason they *both* miss their entry and it all becomes a mess (something like the 76 HOTS when Moraz completely fucks up) with Little Jon desperately waving his hands in the air to signal "stop stop stop let's start again", but nobody stops and after a few moments everyone gets back on track.
I'm glad Steve played 'Mood for a day' as it's one of my favourite's. After playing 'surface tension' he introduced it as a piece dedicated to London. Then he dedicated 'Clap' as usual to his son Dylan who was present at the show. The cheerful and excited crowd came to a total silence when steve played his numbers, only to clap along while he performed 'Clap'. A tour de force!
Tonight we are upstairs for yet another different view. The set was slightly different in that Steve played Surface Tension as the middle track of his solo, and after The Revealing Science of God Jon started to jam a Thank You track to the road crew which everyone else joined in on, this fell apart after a very short while.
Once again the band were awesome and really seemed to be having a good time. Igor seemed even further forward in the mix tonight and at one point he was louder that Steve Howe!!
One slight downer, why couldn't the rest of the audience upstairs stand up for the last few tracks????? Oh, well here ends three nights of seeing the greatest band in the world. All I can say is that it has been worth the chaos and long drives and I will willingly do it again.
So. The last concert of the first UK leg. Another high octane performance: a little tighter than last night, I thought. Being at the front of the circle in a slightly larger venue means that, as a friend of mine observed on Wednesday, you're just outside the bubble of energy that exudes from the stage and the stalls. Which can feel slightly strange... Normally I appreciate the contrast between a front-of-house immersion and a bit of critical distance. But it has to be admitted that if this is your seventh show, you'd probably be better of downstairs... Even so.... Revealing Science worked particularly well last night, I thought - but then I'm always willing to fall in love with it every time I hear it. What it gains from sheer power on stage it loses in light, shade and dynamics, of course ... but you can't have everything.
Very good to meet up with the ubiquitous Henry, transatlantically-translated Merry (sorry about the London rain, dear) and her friend Shaun from Manchester - where the sun never dims. I did my best to misdirect them in relation to the Wren Cafe, but we made it, nonetheless. And let's not forget the delightful Christa W, who has also been trekking around Britain for the last eight days. Robin Kauffman's been around for the two Hammersmith concert's, too. Quite understandably, she never knows who the hell I am - but all Englishmen sound alike anyway, frankly ;)
Particular thanks to Henry for providing me with an After Show pass, thus ending my career as the world's worst ligger... 45 minutes in a small, dingy hospitality room (alleviated by a three minute visit from a well-oiled Chris Squire) doesn't count as the most lavish hospitality you'll ever encounter ... but it was really good to talk to HP - a legend in his own right, and a thoroughly nice guy. Mel B could do a lot worse...