Thanks to Bob Juckett

Let me just say that tonights show was fantastic as ever… tinged with a little sadness because now for me the tour is all over bar the credit card bills and the indelible memories of five wonderful nights spread out over the last five weeks or so.

Tonight I was on the side at the left, six rows up (just slightly above stage level) and equivalent to about fifteen rows from the front on the floor, which turned out to be another excellent place to sit. Incredibly I was actually able to sit for as long as I wanted to for the entire show… something my tired old legs were extremely grateful for… it’s been a very long time since I’ve done three shows in four nights. Had a bunch of drunken partiers from Buffalo immediately behind me for the first half… seems to me like an awful long way to drive and spend $250+ on a ticket just to get totally smashed, but who am I to judge. I was hoping to meet them at the bar in the intermission and buy them all a couple of large shots so they would pass out, but thankfully they apparently didn’t need my help and failed to find their way back for the second half. The rest of my neighbors were fairly civilised although I did get a tremendous giggle out of Captain Obvious sat immediately in front of me, who I had chatted to briefly before the start.. He was convinced that his seat was the best ever, but the prime moment was when he felt the need to turn round during Brick3 and tell me “Look! The Wall is really big now!”. I was of course extremely grateful that he pointed this out otherwise it might totally have escaped my attention.

In between the beer showers, yelling, screaming and miss-shouted lyrics I was able to enjoy another faultless first half – there were once again sound effects on Roger’s cue in ITF, the kids were even better again, especially the “star” little girl air guitar player on the left. Rogers mother preamble was rather shortened tonight, simply commenting that it was “apposite that today is Veterans Day… We will remember them” before dropping into the usual “incredible… thirty years ago… videotaped… narcissitic… time-travel… double-track” bit. maybe I’d just never noticed it before but in WSWDN an awesome car sound effect drove from back to front of arena during “drive a more powerful car”.

The shortened intermission is definitely a problem, compounded by the fact that the five minute warning was not audible from outside the arena… I was on the aisle seat of a dead-end row of 12, and none of my row-mates had made it back before Hey You started… luckily there’s nothing much to see during that… and they were still drifting back during the guitar duet, but from this angle there was nothing to see during that either, although it was neat to observe the blue backliight casting itself on our opposite numbers on the other side of the arena. The payback with interest for our side was that I was practically sitting in Roger’s “hotel room”. I’m now totally convinced that it is “The Battle of Britain” on his TV. Nothing else remarkable to report about the rest of the second half. The Comfortably Numb Spirally Thingy(tm) is apparently now a permanent feature, DK did another fine job. Roger asked if there were “..any paranoids in the City of Brotherly Love?”. The Wall collapse seemed to have a lot of extra smoke and maybe even some pyros tonight, and in his goodnight, thank-you speech Roger mentioned that he was saying, for the third time this week, “that this was always a great music town”, recalling that PF first played here at the Electric Factory, and “umpteen shows at the Spectrum”.

This was my first time at a last night at any venue, and I usually prefer to sit in my seat for a little while after, rather than rushing out and spending extra time in the parking lot. It was amazing how quickly a small army of crew were scurrying all over the stage starting to pack up. A bunch of orange “crew” shirt guys were taking the bricks of stage and piling them up in the front side seating sections, then folding them up a crating them. My buddy jokingly asked if he could steal one, but the reply lacked any sense of humor at all. Someone on stage must have dropped a live microphone, and the PA was still on – it sounded like a bomb went off… we were then ushered out since they needed our section to pile up even more bricks.

Wow! What a trip it’s been! It all seemed so far off in the future when the tour was announced, and when the tickets went on sale, and now, for me at least, it’s all over.

And for those of you who have yet to see it… Enjoy!

Review thanks to sysyphus

Chris Avery sent in the above picture. The graphic on Mr Screen is new.

Chris Avery sent in the above picture. The graphic on Mr Screen is new.

Fantastic show last night, night 3 in Philly, my only show of the tour. Having seen Roger on every tour since Pro’s and Con’s, this show was supremely fulfilling. Roger’s singing was simply amazing. His voice was front and center and never gave out. Any complaints that he does’nt play enough bass is nuts: he jammed solidly for almost the entire first half. Robbie Wycoff was a fine vocal foil to Roger. He sung everything straight up, not overemoting or reaching but hitting it right. Yes, the Wall and the visuals were and are simply amazing. There are moments of “static” back-drop that make you wonder “why dont they jazz it up here?” but then realize that the passivity is in fact part of the work and it sets you up for mind bending visuals to come. For me, the real joy was this BAND. I haven’t read enough props to this band (and the crew: technical rigging over-the-top awesome). First off; Dave K. on lead guitar blew the place away. This dude is on fire. Snowy and G.E. Smith played exeptional solo’s and grooves all night. Amazing team. Harry Waters and John Carin. Are you kidding me? This band is insanely good and really, really on fire. I said to my buddy Dave after the show “I would love to see this bandplay an after hours show right now”. He agreed. Vocals were dead-on. The all-male “backing singers” were superb.
You sensed all show that Roger had control over every aspect, from the “walk in ” music (Neil Young, John Lennon’s “Mother”, awesome) to the emotional, spacey music durning the break..great stuff. SPeaking of spacey: there were some fantastic musical improvisations are various junctures: two reprises of the main Wall themes that were stunning. The outro jam from Run Like Hell was off the charts. The volume of the show reached take-off levels but was always high quality. It rang my bell but never scorched my ears.
Only complaint: we’ve become a “chatting society” haven’t we? Everybody chats endlessly, before, during, after every song. I really love to listen deeply to The Wall, the softer, symphonic passages were so rich in detail last night but for the endless chatter all around me. Introspection, silence and meditation have yeilded to..chatting the night away, it seems.
In the end, Roger was very gracious and gave his usual heartfelt thanks. He seemed to linger an extra minute or so at the end…sensing (as perhaps many of us did) that this may have been his last, greatest, show in Philadelphia. I truly hope not.

Review thanks to Dan Ehart

Thanks to George Skroumbelos

We sat next to a couple of guys who had received complimentary tickets from Roger. They worked in a restaurant one was a waiter and the other a bar tender. A couple of nights before Roger had been in the restaurant and was so impressed with their service he offered them two comp tickets to the show! Today was also Veterans Day and there was a whole row of Vets tonight slightly off to the right side off the floor.

Roger has again been working on the visuals and has the last couple of shows added even more animation and changed the projections about a bit! During the lyrics “a snapshot in the family album” he’s added a picture on Mr screen of Roger with his mom and dad, its the old black and white pictures that’s been seen online for years but they have coloured it red to match in with all the other graphics for Another Brick! There’s also a nice subtle change to the camera animation that’s on Mr Screen during Mother, the camera now gets covered by the red animated “blood” that covers the whole of the wall. It’s a little thing but works really well.

Last night there was also a change in the animation at the end of Goodbye Blue Sky, normally all the symbols (shell logo, $ sign, Mercedes logo, cross, Star of David) that are shown coming out of the B52 planes usually fade in and out and fall all over the wall around, however last night they all “bounced” down from the top of the screen and bounced around at the bottom of the wall. Similar to before but different, you have to see it to know what I mean. Roger also spoke of the veterans at the beginning of Mother and thanked them all.

The crowd tonight were better than the second show but still not as good as the first one, they all remained standing up but the energy just wasn’t as good as the first night. There was a lot of “action” around our seats as well, a lot of people coming in and out and changing seats and moving around which kinda took the edge of a couple of things for me.

After intermission, we headed back out to the floor and watched the second half from the right side, about 5 rows from the stage. We had a great vantage point to watch Jim try grab the armband from here too!

I’m still not liking the little “oohh ohhh oohhs” that Robbie is doing in The Show Must Go On, it just doesn’t sound right to me! I am however really liking the new graphics for Comfy Numb, as we couldn’t see Dave on top of the wall due to being so close I watched Roger and the new graphics all the time. They just seam to fit perfectly. Made me laugh when Roger changed up his normal line and said “Are there any paranoids in the city of brotherly love tonight?” I didn’t quite catch what he said at first ’til Kami heard it also and heard what he actually said.

After Waiting For The Worms we watched the scramble on the floor around Jim as Roger threw his armband!! It was hysterical, there were people everywhere scrambling to get it! Jim later on told us that it seemed like everyone knew tonight that it was going to happen and even though everyone around them were different people from the nights before they still knew where and when Roger was going to throw it.

Security started moving people early on before the wall fall, the whole of the right section was full of people tonight, even though the yellow caution tape was still there and had blocked off about 4 seats from the stage all the way down the section they started to tell people to move out of there seats in the first 5 rows. Kami and I were right on the border where the wall would come down and moved back a row and in towards the arena a couple of seats. Had we not done we would have been pleasantly hit on the head by falling bricks!! Oh if only!!

Roger thanked the crowd again and said how much of a music town Philly has always been and how much the crowd have always been appreciative, he then introduced the band as normal and they all left the stage once again for a final time in Philly.

Review thanks to Simon Wimpenny

The Philadelphia Inquirer

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