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Home arrow Roger Waters 2006
July 1st - HYDE PARK, LONDON, ENGLAND Print E-mail

Hyde Park Calling Festival Ticket
Hyde Park Calling Festival ticket scan
Hyde Park, London
Hyde Park, London
Capacity: 25000
Concert starts: 4pm (doors open 2pm)

Address of venue: Hyde Park, London. W2 2UH. MAP

Website: www.hydeparkcalling.co.uk
Venue website: www.royalparks.gov.uk


Nick Mason has now been confirmed as guesting on drums for this performance. Other acts appearing before Roger's set are slowly being announced; Texas were the first, and subsequently, Starsailor, Suzanne Vega and Chris Difford (Squeeze) have also been added to the line-up for the Saturday show.


SET LIST
 
FIRST HALF: In The Flesh, Mother, Set The Controls For the Heart Of The Sun, Shine On You Crazy Diamond, Have A Cigar, Wish You Were Here, Southampton Dock, The Fletcher Memorial Home, Perfect Sense parts 1 and 2, Leaving Beirut, Sheep.
SECOND HALF: Dark Side of the Moon. ENCORE: The Happiest Days Of Our Lives, Another Brick In The Wall (Pt 2), Vera, Bring the Boys back Home, Comfortably Numb.


COMMENTS

Almost a year to the day since the historic reunion at Live8, and a baking hot day greeted a crowd distracted by the World Cup football match featuring the England team...to pacify the crowd a large screen was erected at the back of the venue showing the football.

It was, however, angled such that the crowd could just turn their heads and see the match unfolding. This lead to the lead singer of Texas at one point asking the crowd "Sorry, am I distracting you?!" as the final throes of the match took place. However, certainly her bass player had stopped playing and was watching at this point too!

The football match also resulted in low crowd numbers early in the afternoon, with a combination of the beating sun and the sport keeping people away. Ticket touts were doing rotten business, selling tickets for a few pounds. What a shame!

Nick Mason took part in the second half, and encores, of what turned out to be a performance akin to the weather - blistering. A number of people we spoke to had been to a number of the shows leading up to the Hyde Park performance, and all agreed that the musicianship in London was better than at any previous show.

The set list was unchanged from all recent shows. Clearly decisions have been made that it is the ideal order to perform. One fluid thing is the array of stage effects used - London had the standard cross-stage firework and flame plumes, and it also had the occasionally used flame towers.

The wheel of fire DIDN'T make an appearance, neither did the new stage effect that was trialled in the soundcheck. This involves a beam that extends out of one side of the stage, and harks back to some similar effects used briefly in the 1970s. Sounds great fun, but we don't want to spoil any surprises in case it happens later in the tour!


Roger Waters and Nick Mason, London
Roger Waters and Andy Fairweather-Low, joined by Nick Mason, in London.
Picture © Matt Johns, Brain Damage

The duet of Nick Mason and Graham Broad worked really well, with the drummers each taking different parts. Nick tended to go for some interesting subtleties in places, a good counterpoint to Graham's playing of the core elements.

Roger himself seemed to be in his element throughout the show - and indeed even through in an impromtu "If you don't eat your meat" segment into the run up to Comfortably Numb.

A superb show - everyone on top form - and even the locally imposed curfew didn't dampen any aspect of the performance. Great stuff...

CLICK HERE to see Brain Damage Magazine founder Glenn Povey's review of the show

SHOW REVIEW

By Brain Damage contributor, Sue Nightingale

In the scorching London heat, a crowd of us from the www.floyd-fans.com and the Aussie Floyd forums arrived at Hyde Park to see Roger.

The support acts weren't much to write home about, although Starsailor were a lot better than expected. Quite splendid was the fact that it was possible to turn your back on the stage and view the football, which was being screened at the back of the park. During the penalty shootout Sharleen Spiteri of Texas actually stopped singing because everyone had turned away to watch the match instead!

It made my day, when Arnni (my friend who plays for the youngest PF tribute band in the UK) eventually managed to find us in the vast festival crowd. I'd almost given up hope of seeing him, when much to my surprise, I felt a tap on the shoulder and swung around to find my fine friend standing there.

Finally, the moment that we'd been waiting for arrived with Roger shouting out, "Are you ready?" and then launching into In The Flesh. Roger was on great form ... acting up in a fine display of showmanship particularly during In The Flesh ... there was nice bit of grimacing to be seen!

Although a distance back from the stage, we were in a good spot sound wise. Being right between the quad mixing desks, we had sound coming from behind as well as in front. It was quite freaky and sooo very exciting ... Arnni and I, both admitted to having goose bumps during Set The Controls.

The backdrops were impressive; particularly liked the spaceman during Perfect Sense and as for those flame throwers above the stage during Comfy ... wow, I didn't think the day could get any hotter!

Before performing Leaving Beiruit, Roger told a touching story about the Arab family who took him in and gave him board and lodgings when he'd hitchhiked across the Middle East as a teenager. Fletcher was blinding!

The first set was faultless (other than the missing bit at the start of SOYCD ... I could say more, but it would only be gratuitous fault finding!) and it's really difficult to pick out the highlights. Set the Controls was fantastic with a psychedelic backdrop and footage from Syd's days. Have A Cigar really rocked out and as the sun began to set over Hyde Park, the sound of Sheep baaing loudly in quad was freaking awesome!

At the start of the second set, Nick came on to thunderous applause. He was beaming from ear to ear - what a fantastic sight!

The second set comprised of the whole of the DSOTM and it was like being at that Great Gig almost!

The encore commenced with the excellent surround sound of the helicopter chucks from The Happiest Days and flowing into ABITW II ... needless to say, it was a monster with the audience and no school choir was needed!

Comfy was good because Roger was singing it, but there was a man, or should I say two, missing! Dave Kilminster did a great job, however, I was rather disappointed with Snowy's playing, but then I've been rather spoilt this past month!

Musicians of note, were Dave Kilminster on lead guitar who played exceptionally all night.

Ian Ritchie's sax playing was clear and smooth. He gave an excellent performance at the opening of Us and Them as well as at the end of SOYCD.

Jon Carin worked hard all night and his vocals were superb throughout ... disappointingly, not once did they put the camera on him! Jon truly has a wonderful voice and it was particularly notable on Time and Us & Them, which incidentally contain my favourite Dave/Rick harmonies.

All in all, Roger put on a truly magnificent show and Nick was splendid ... you can never fault Nick, always the confident player, he never puts a stick out of place (except for the Pompei version of OOTD, just kidding!). Nick got a second thunderous round of applause when Roger introduced the band and it was really heart warming to see them both embrace at the end ... it bought a lump to my throat. They walked off stage arm in arm ... awww!

Now about that uncomfortable business of lip synching ... I was a bit too far back to see the musicians on the stage and was concentrating on the large screens. The only thing that I noticed was Roger's lips stop moving prematurely twice during Sheep, but I can't be 100% certain and there can be quite a delay on those screens. Anyway, why on earth would somebody as professional as Roger have his mic on if he was going to lip synch. I do know that Jon Carin, who is well practiced in PF harmonies, was doing a fantastic job on vocals throughout the night.

Now if you're going to ask me who’s show was the best ... David's or Roger's ... then I'd say they both were. David's was like a musical master class and Roger's was an outstanding performance of true showmanship. Put the two together and add Nick and Rick then you've got the perfect band and show in my book!

I had a fantastic time at all three RAH Gilmour shows and yesterday at Roger's Hyde Park show and would just like to say a big thank you to all of the people I shared the experiences with because that was a very special part too! Here's to meeting you all again very soon!

SHOW REVIEW

By Brain Damage contributor, Siobhan Tallon

After an evening watching England go out of the World Cup on the big screen in Hyde Park, thousands of demoralised fans turned to Roger Waters to lift and inspire them; which he did, after the first notes of In The Flesh, I, for one, had completely forgotten the match and was lost in the most fantastic concert I've ever been to!

Roger appeared to be having a great time, often appearing almost overwhelmed, especially during a stirring rendition of Bring The Boys Back Home, which moved myself and many in the crowd around me, and easily put the football into perspective!

The multi talented Jon Carin was brilliant, as always, and the backing singers were great, especially PP Arnold during Perfect Sense.

The second half lifted us even further, with the appearance of Nick Mason alongside Graham Broad on drums. Nick appeared to have a marvellous time, although I'm not sure his drumming came through very clearly.

Highlights were Sheep, just fantastic, and no way was he lip-syncing, and Comfortably numb, the lighting and flame effects were brilliant and brought the concert to a suitably dramatic end! Thank you, Roger, for a fantastic performance, please tour again soon, come to Liverpool where so many of us love you!

SHOW REVIEW

By Brain Damage contributor, Mike Locke

I went to Roger Waters DSOTM gig yesterday in Hyde Park and boy am I glad I did. I always thought that Roger Waters was the one who threw a hissy fit and walked out on the band when it didn't all go his own way back around The Wall / Final Cut time. And even at the Live8 reunion it all appeared to be a tad contrived with Roger grinning and mugging to the cameras while old Stoneface seemed to be putting up with this for a good cause.

I hereby apologise for being such a self-opinionated t*t. Yesterday was a damn good iteration of a "Best of Floyd" by one of the creative geniuses who created the band. I'd forgotted quite how much the composer credit of Waters appears on Floyd's work. That's a huge compliment to Gilmour, Mason and Wright in the post-Waters years, I guess.

I first saw Pink Floyd when Wembley Arena was called by its proper name of Empire Pool during the Animals tour in 77 (ish) (and my VW Beetle broke down exiting the car park to the amusement of everyone behind me but that's another story) and, having been dumb enough to miss Pulse, I just couldn't let this opportunity go by. After all one of us could have died if I waited another 30 years to get off my butt.

I loved it: Roger's choice bits of Floyd from Set The Controls To The Heart of the Sun, chunks of Wish You Were Here, Sheep, Final Cut, some heartfelt anti-war sentiment, slabs of the Wall and the whole DSOTM. Something I never thought I would have the opportunity to hear and see. And with Nick Mason too (can I borrow your car, Nick - one of the red ones would be fine...)

The downsides were few and practical (mostly) rather than creative. Never trust Live Experience when they promise you "garden seating" with a view of the stage. That means a tented ghetto with a £100 burger from which you can see the back of the stage. Humph.

And don't stand behind the red-topped egomaniac who thought constantly waving his entire body from side to side with his hands on his head was a benefit to those standing behind him especially when he turned round with the cheesy grin as he tried to remember the words. Er, actually we know the words and we'd rather see the stage than the back of your spiky hairdo. And, BTW it's dark so only tossers wear shades. Oh, OK you are one.

My only creative comment is that, despite the excellence of the rest of the musicians (and the female vocalists were as hair-raising as the originals - top notch), there is still only one Gilmour and only one Wright. Happily Mason joined for DSOTM so we got half the real band for the important bit. But even as good as Snowy, Dave and Andy were, there's just something about Gilmour and Wright that stands out. I know this to be true as I am listenening to Pulse as I type ;-)

I heard David Gilmour on Front Row the other day and he said he wasn't interested in a Floyd tour unless they had done a new album to go with it. Well, fair enough. But I for one will keep my fingers crossed that either they all choose to do a new album (Relics '07, anyone?) or David relents and allows himself to have a little fun.

But please, Floyd fans, ignore my idiosyncratic carpings - if any of you missed DSOTM the first time round, get tickets for this one. It's a great gig. It may not have Gilmour and Wright but it does have Waters and, for the lucky few, Mason. And for those of you who are going to the Magny-Cours gig after the Grand Prix - I hate you , I hate you all ;)

SHOW REVIEW

By Brain Damage contributor, Thomas Allott

All I can say is that I can now die a happy man - due to my dispoition as a junior-ish Floyd fan at 26, I've never had the opportunity to see all four active Floyds in action together, barring the wonderful event this time last year (which I caught on TV). However, in the last month, I've had the joy of seeing essentially two full Floyd sets with little crossover.

And, as much as I enjoyed David Gilmour's Albert Hall show, Roger Waters' Hyde Park set was probably a better representation of what seeing Pink Floyd's sets would have been like. His band was absolutely spot-on in terms of recreating the parts played on the records- I'd expect nothing less from Jon Carin, but Dave Kilminster's playing was carbon-copy perfect of his similarly-monikered predecessor. The trio of backing singers (Katie Kissoon, PP Arnold and Carol Kenyon) had enough history on their own to sell out a gig like that, and seeing them was simply the icing on the cake.

Waters himself took obvious delight in prowling the catwalks to the side of the stage, grinning down at the crowd and making the odd bit of eye-contact with the throng. I'd read that he can appear uncomfortable as a front man, but there was certainly no sign of that. He was certainly in charge!

Having been unable to restrain myself, I'd seen the setlist from previous gigs on the Brain Damage reports, and there were no surprises per se, but the joy of hearing tracks from Animals and The Final Cut, as well as Have A Cigar done live was an abolute treat, and all I could have hoped for.

I'll make no secret of the fact that during Southampton Dock and The Fletcher Memorial Home, I felt a shiver of emotion that you rarely, if ever get at an event of that size. And again in Perfect Sense (which was as much to do with the wonderful PP Arnold as anything) and Leaving Beirut, which was very touching.

Roger was in fine voice, and there was no sign of lipsynching at all. I was right up close and unless he's an accomplished mime, there was nothing like that going on. My girlfriend pondered whether he had a backing track he sang along with to flesh out the sound, but even if that's the case it's far from unusual- I've seen Sparks and The Beach Boys both use that sort of thing.

Dark Side was, well, it was Dark Side. It was wonderful to get the full-on ambience of the piece, and to see Nick and Roger playing together was a joy, though Nick's parts was very much overwhelmed by Graham Broad who's a harder-hitting drummer. Still he seemed to be enjoying himself. The encore, likewise, was very much as expected, and highly enjoyable. It was good to see Roger's bass playing- simplistic where necessary but with the odd fill that showed he was really getting into it.

If there was a downside, it was the awful attitude of the crowd. Maybe it was the heat, or the football, or both, but everywhere I went, there was a hideous undercurrent of agression. There were obviously fans of Floyd music there (though even some of them were quite nasty- my girlfriend got berated for being too tall and blocking someone's view, even though she's only 5'4"!), but they were outnumbered by the drunken hordes braying and chanting and yelling.

I'm not a fan of Texas, but I couldn't help feel for them as they played to an audience who either had their backs to them, watching the football, or acting like idiots- one particularly unpleasant chap threw his shoe at Sharleen Spiteri. Fortunately she was able to single him out and humiliate him in front of the whole crowd, which is no more than he deserved. Even after the football and during Waters' set, there was lots of aggro- a load of beered-up footie fans spoiling the show for everyone with chanting, barging through and I even saw some very blatant racist comments thrown at some of the Portugese attendees. Truly abhorrent behaviour.

Mercifully, the music and spectacle (and who can't call huge jets of fire leaping from the canopy of the stage a spectacle?!) was enough to distract from any small-minded stupidity, and the whole event was as good as I expected. More please, Roger!

SHOW REVIEW

By Brain Damage contributor, Bryan Dollery

Man, I've just got back from the best gig I've ever seen (and I've seen lots). Roger Waters and Nick Mason played the whole of Dark Side of the Moon, and finished off with Another Brick in The Wall, and finally the oustanding Comfortably Numb. I have never seen anything so cool in my entire life.

Roger Waters is a god. 50,000 people chanting the words to every song he's ever written, elevating him to godhood on the spot. When he sang, "Mother, do you think they'll like this song," the crowd went wild. And then there was the fire -- dancing across the front of the stage, and billowing from the top corners of the stage into the summer evening sky -- Oh My God...

SHOW REVIEW

By Brain Damage contributor, Alex Mircica

After the disappointment of the football, the crowd moved forward in eager anticipation to await the occasionally stubborn, sometimes controversial but undeniably talented Roger Waters and his 'new' Bleeding Hearts Band.

There were no changes in the set-list and I was a little upset that 'The Gunner's Dream' hadn't found its way back into the repertoire.

'In the Flesh' opened up the set and many in the crowd including myself held up the 'crossed arms' salute from The Wall showing our support for Roger's Magnus Optus.

It was great hearing tracks from Floyd's past that don't rarely get an airing and 'The Fletcher Memorial Home' in particular was spellbinding, with a great recreation of Gilmour's solo played flawlessly by Snowy White.

On a side note I was taken a-back by the crowd reaction for the Final Cut material- perhaps it is no longer the 'forgotten' Floyd album.

'Have a Cigar' got people moving with its upbeat guitar riff and a spectacular rendition of 'Sheep' with extended outro brought the first half to a close.

Special mention should also be reserved for a VERY powerful 'Leaving Beirut' which had the crowd reacting positively to Waters message of tolerance and peaceful co-existence during these unsettling times.

Dark Side and its accompanying visual feast was as brilliant as ever and felt very patriotic-after the disastrous football; nothing has ever seemed more English than listening to classic Floyd on a hot Summers day- St Georges crosses' waving high.

Encores rounded off a fantastic set (Vera and Bring the Boys..very appropriate and current) and Dave Kilminster performed his duties admirably filling in the shoes of Doyle Bramhall very well throughout the show.

As for lip synching- well if there was any I didn't see it (and I was near the front), Roger seemed, on the whole, in fine voice and spirit, smiling many times and interacting with the crowd more than I have ever seen him in the past.

A perfect English evening in July. Thank you Roger.

SHOW REVIEW

By Brain Damage contributor, Natalie Lyons

On a beautiful summer’s day we set out for Hyde Park in central London. Although we left early to ensure that we could watch the England-Portugal World Cup football match, the diabolical trains meant that we had little time to spare.

A big thumbs down to the organizers, as it took us ages to find the entrance to the concert. When we finally did, the stewards told us that the box office was on the other side of the park, so we had a long walk and a mammoth queue to collect our tickets.

The organizers kindly provided a giant screen for the football, however it couldn’t make up for the incredibly bad choice of support bands. I only caught Starsailor (boring) and Texas (the pinnacle of sh*tness! The highlight of their set was when someone threw a shoe at the singer), but I was disappointed that there were no bands booked that would have been more suited to Roger Waters’ fanbase, especially since the Roskilde show in Denmark on the 2nd has such a superb line-up.

We managed to catch the second half of the football, then extra time and the penalty shootout. Unfortunately England lost, which subdued the crowd somewhat.

Thank God for Roger! The sense of anticipation was immense, and it was clear that the vast majority of the 30,000 or so crowd were there to see him. Everywhere we looked there were Waters, Floyd, Gilmour and Barrett t-shirts, and the bright sunshine meant that we saw a fair few Pink Floyd tattoos on display. People of all ages had travelled from all over the UK to be there, as it was Roger’s only show over here.

Before Roger came on there were a few Bob Dylan and Neil Young songs played. He was about 15 minutes late, and then In the Flesh kicked in with HUGE guitars and towers of sparks (the pyrotechnics throughout were fantastic).

Roger was on great form, prowling the stage and thrashing out the basslines. His vocals were excellent, and I’m positive I saw no signs of lip-syncing.

The atmosphere was mind-blowing. The crowd sang along with every word and applauded every statement Roger made in his lyrics. Dozens of people held their joints aloft when he said “There’s one smoking a joint”. “Mother should I trust the government?” was met with a resounding “No”. There were cheers when George W. Bush appeared onscreen in the excellent video to Fletcher Memorial Home, which was a song that had gained new resonance with recent world events. The anti-war message throughout was full-on, and Roger sang every word with utter conviction.

Set The Controls was hypnotic. The girls’ backing was great, and the footage on the screens of Pink Floyd in the 1960s was the perfect accompaniment. As the song ended, there was a fabulous slow-motion shot a youthful Roger falling to the ground in a field of hay, taken from the promotional video to Scarecrow.

I enjoyed Leaving Beirut, which worked well with Roger’s introduction and the accompanying comic-strip animation. It was very well received by the crowd, as was Perfect Sense. Perhaps the reaction will encourage him to bring out a new album soon!

When the riff at the beginning of Have a Cigar kicked in there were massive cheers. It was fantastic to hear Roger perform this song, and I think he did a great job of the singing. This song had a really great, heavy ending with a massive riff.

Sheep, again, was met with rapturous applause. As the song started, it sounded like the whole crowd in unison said “YEAH!” and then joined in with the bleating noises. This song sounded HARD! Roger’s performance was top notch, and the middle section with the bastardised Psalm 23 was truly eerie. If I had to pick a favourite song (and it’s difficult) I think it would be this.

As the first half of the set ended, Roger announced that Dark Side of the Moon would be next. The crowd seemed to be in a daze throughout the intermission.

As Dark Side of the Moon began it was getting dark, and the moon could be seen in the sky. The whole performance of the album was phenomenal. Too many highlights to mention! Utterly breathtaking throughout. On the Run was a knockout moment, with the surround sound completely blowing everyone away. Roger seemed really happy to have Nick there, and it was wonderful to see them onstage together.

After the second half of the set, everyone took their bows and Roger thanked the crowd. It seemed like he’d had a great night, as had everyone. As the band left the stage Roger said “We’ll come back”.

When they returned Roger introduced his band. Harry Waters got a big cheer when the screens showed him with his enormous beard! Everyone’s performance was spot on. The trio of guitarists I thought were particularly impressive, although I was disappointed not to see more of the ever-dapper Andy Fairweather-Lowe, and his cool Vox Teardrop guitar.

The encore consisted of songs from the Wall, a barn-storming rendition of Another Brick in the Wall Pt 2, followed by Vera/Bring the Boys Back Home, which was very poignant. Then to top it all, Comfortably Numb, complete with pillars of flame on top of the stage. What can I say? This was sublime!

Overall, after seeing one of the In The Flesh shows in 2002, this concert definitely rocked harder, and Roger was a true showman. It’s a shame that the England football team lacked Roger’s passion. If they’d put in half of what he (a man of 62, nearly three times their age) did, they’d have won the World Cup!

SHOW REVIEW

By Brain Damage contributor, Simon Hunt

Well, what can I say!

I, like many people I spoke to on the way to - and after- the gig, was a little bit apprehensive as to see if our Rog could still cut the mustard - especially after last years live 8 performance where nerves sem to get the better of him. But he was abso-bloody-lutely superb! The last gig I saw in London was his 'hitch-hiking' show at Earl's Court, which was brilliant - Clapton et al. this show was better!

In the flesh pt2 opened the show (nice to see he wasn't being PC) and the show went from strength to strength. I must admit I shed tears especially to 'Vera' - 'bring the boys back home' delivered with such power and emotion - especially poignant on the anniversary of the Somme, Shine on with the backdrop film of Syd and a few more. He smiled a lot and genuinely looked like he was having a ball!

There was a change in my feelings towards Roger over the past few years, I guess the infighting had something to do with it, but this show made me realise that he is the genius of Pink Floyd just as DG is the sound of Pink Floyd. but full credit to Snowy White, AFwL & Co for doing a brilliant job. I guess we all know that DG's solo on CN is what separates him from anyone else but I have no complaints whatsoever with the guys on Saturday. I was hoping for some of P & C of Hitch-hiking but we can't have everything. I feel elated that my wife and I witnessed one of our true rock legends (and Nick of course) performing what I can only describe as an awesome show.

Now would't have been just great to have RW & DG appear as guest artists -- oops now I am getting silly. As for the lip synching stories - if he did it - he was bloody good. One slight problem was a bit of distortion on our speakers on DSOTM - had the just turned them up too much? or was it where I was stood some 30-40m from them? Oh and if i'm being picky - some laser would have been good on the night. Well done Roger and thanks for a truly memorable day, (blotted only by the usual penalty surrender in Germany!)

As for the rest of the Gig - can't comment as we missed it watching the footy - not bovvered- with a piss head from Birmingham in the Ship on Bayswater road.

SHOW REVIEW

By Brain Damage contributor, Tim O'Leary

The much anticipated show in London’s Hyde Park started in blistering sunshine during a British summer heat wave. Roger came on stage and shouted, “Are you ready” and then blazed into ‘In The Flesh’, stood before the crossed black and red hammers from The Wall. The crowd was immediately in the groove and Roger looked confident as he swaggered across the stage. Like him or not, this guy is a showman and knows how to play a crowd.

The show continued with a selection of early Pink Floyd numbers and ‘Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun’ was performed faultlessly, with a back drop that resembled the swirling colours of a lava lamp, that was reminiscent of Floyd’s psychedelic era. It also had images of Syd Barrett and stills from the original Arnold Layne video. ‘Shine On’ was met with rapturous applause from the crowd and the performances from all on stage were extremely tight. ‘Wish You Were Here’ had the audience singing and that set the scene for the rest of the show as people sang along with Roger.

Before performing ‘Leaving Beirut’, Roger told a touching story about an Arab family who took him in and gave him board and lodgings when he hitchhiked across the Middle East as a teenager. The song itself had onscreen graphics and lyrics that depicted his emotions well. The first set ended with ‘Sheep’ from the Animals album and the anticipation was now rising in the arena, as we awaited The Dark Side of the Moon.

As Roger entered the stage after the short break he announced, “Now before we do this …… and we are going to.. let me introduce the band” He then went through each member before finally bringing on Nick Mason. The crowd responded with thunderous applause and Nick was beaming from ear to ear. It was quite a moving moment for the avid fans, as they stood before them arm in arm.

Dark Side of the Moon was flawless and of particular note was ‘The Great Gig in the Sky’, which was beautifully sung by PP Arnold. She managed to capture the mood perfectly and this was a match for Troy’s original on the 1973 album. As the set continued, the sun was now setting and the light show was coming into it’s own, with pulsing lights, strobes and lasers blazing out over London.

Rogers band was exceptional throughout, with very tight performances from all, the lead guitar Dave Kilminster was a real crowd pleaser with flamboyant moves and a sound that emulated David Gilmour. The encores provided the normal favourites and the show ended predictably with ‘Comfortably Numb’

So what else went on? Well he got a little political (like he does) and had a real pop at George Bush and Tony Blair. Quotes like The proud British Bulldog is now a poodle to a dirty mongrel, or words to that effect. And that his childhood Texas education must have really f****d him up! The crowd seemed to like it and I agree with the sentiment, I’m just not sure this was the right forum to air it?

All in all though, this was an impressive show with a full stage star-vision backdrop, various pyrotechnics, banks of lights, an inflatable floating astronaut and huge plumes of flame during the encores, the heat they produced was phenomenal! The show was (nearly) on the scale of 90's Pink Floyd performances - hugely entertaining and a memorable night for all present.

SHOW REVIEW

By Brain Damage contributor, Babararacucudada

Drove up to the in-laws' place in Bedford from Plymouth on Friday night. Missed all the football. Left the B-Ling with his grandparents and Mrs B and I went to London for the day on the train.

Arrived in The Smoke at about 11 am and went to Covent Garden, had a little wander about in the sunshine, had a very nice pasty, did a bit of shopping, had a pint of cider in a deliciously air-conditioned pub.

"What next?" says she. "I like to pop into the Argyll Inn at Oxford Circus when I'm in the area" quoth I so off we went. A pint of Addlestones this time. Then off to Oxford Street for a spot more shopping.

Bedlam!! Unbeknownst to us it was Gay Pride day and every type of homosexual known to mankind was their to celebrate their... Um, well just to celebrate really. Great fun and quite an eye opener I can tell you. Especially the Gay S&M crew and the transgender people. Then there was the drag acts and lots more besides. Biggest cheer was for the Gay and Lesbian Ambulance Persons. Loud music from the floats and lots of whistle blowing. I never really believed before that some people wore sailor suits but they do. Believe me. I'm not sure where they were headed but there must have been one helluva party somewhere later that night and jolly good fun seemed to be had by all.

Still boldy onward we went and arrived at Hyde Park for Roger Waters at the London Calling Festival just in time to get for Chris Difford's opening act. He ran through a selection of old Squeeze hits largely to mass disinterest of the the sun-baked throng that had gathered. A shame really. Great songs and they deserved better. "Have a nice Pinky Floydy sort day" said he. We intended to.

Mrs B and I positioned ourselves so that she could watch the bands and I could watch the football - on a big screen which with no commentary was really quite weird. Luckily we had brought a walkman along so I had 5Live for the commentary.

Break Co-Op (?) came and went without eliciting much reaction from me Mrs B or anyone else. Starsailor Mrs B enjoyed. They were a bit louder and peed me off because I couldn't hear the commentary anymore.

Texas were, well, dull. They themselves seemed more interested in the football (the penaties were on at this stage).

An announcer came on and told us it was the hottest day of the year so far. The sweat trickled down by back in agreement.

To be honest it was only once the game was over that I started to pay much attention to the festival. Beer was only £3 a pint which was a pleasant surprise. Pear cider was £3.50 and very refreshing it was too. The bars were very big with lots of staff and you got served quickly. We had an amble around and caught The Lightning Seeds on the second stage and they were pleasant enough. I've got a few of their CDs and I can't really say that gigs add much to them. The opposite if anything.

A little saddened that we had missed Suzanne Vega ("well you did want to watch the match...") we made our way to the main stage, in earnest, for the first, and only, time.

The searing heat had died down a little and a perfect British summer's evening followed. Prior to The Man himself coming on they were playing loads of Neil Young over the PA. Helpless, Needle and the Damage Done, Southern Man. I don't think I've ever seen such enthusiastic singing along to taped music before.

Then the main event: Roger Waters.

The show was broken up into 3 parts. To begin with there was a trot through Floyd's back catalogue. A couple of his own songs (which were new to me) near the end.

What really stood out though was the passion of some of these songs. Especially the anti-war ones. Reg (or was it Rog?) spat out some of the lines and the images accompanying them no room for misunderstanding the vitriol and contempt as scathing line after scathing line was rammed home.

To be honest I was more than a little surprised. I'd seen him solo before aeons ago and I had seen Floyd (minus Reg) but I had never seen this emotion before on either occasion. Neil Young is on record as saying he just recorded an anti-war album because nobody else out there was doing it. Well, Reg has breathed some fresh life into some old tunes and they sounded every bit as relevant today (well yesterday) as they ever could have. Shock and awe? Not 'alf!!

Then there was a short break. Everybody took the chance to relax. The sun was nearly gone and the temperature had dropped to about a relatively icy 85 F!!.

They came back on accompanied by Nick Mason this time (is half of Pink Floyd Pi Flo?) and they played The Dark Side Of The Moon in it's entirety. Stunning. The Great Gig In The Sky was the highlight for me. It was so beautiful it brought a tear to my eye. I'm not sure which of the backing singers it was but she was amazing.

This section was also considerably louder than what had gone before. Reg must have counted the money from the £42.50 (+£5 booking fee) during the interval and bunged an extra 10 bob in the meter. I paid less for my tickets…

The predominantly white, middle-aged and middle-class crowd sang along in rapturous unison (funnily enough everybody seemed to know the words to every song).

All the way through the universal themes of greed, money, oil and war were underlined again and again by the imagery on the screens flanking the stage and behind it. The lyrics to Leaving Beirut were screened and if anybody wants a taste of things then look 'em up. Just how the show will play in the States is anyone's guess. I can't see it being very popular in Texas. I wouldn't expect Bush or Blair to be a special guest, either.

The other theme running through the whole show was Syd Barrett. He was there on numerous bits of film and the drugged-out magnificence of Comfortably Numb obviously stems from Syd Barrett's rather sad story/demise.

The end.

Well nearly. Just as our journey there was delayed and disrupted by Gay Pride then the journey home was beset by problems. The police had closed the nearest tube station and we had to walk to Victoria. After a day in the baking sun, trudging around a steaming London and drinking fruit-based alcoholic beverages it seemed a very long way. Indeed I've got some shocking blisters to prove it.

Then London Transport proceded to shut just about every travel option for us to get back to St. Pancras. One of the many trains we got on was filled with boisterous and singing Frenchmen. "Brazil have lost, then" thought I. Not much gets past me you know. When we eventually did get there St Pancras was shut so we had to walk back to Kings Cross Thameslink. Our troubles were over except for the fact that the next train didn't turn up.

Still at around 2am we arrived back at base tired, hot, blistered and thirsty. Maybe I'm getting too old for this gigging lark. Still it was all worth it.

SHOW REVIEW

By Brain Damage contributor, Louis Backer

Although Hyde Park show lacked the intimacy of my experience in Rome a couple of weeks back, the overall scale and delivery was impressive. Enough praise has already been heaped on the Hyde Park page, so I'll just stick to raising a couple of technicalities, one which may assist those non-conversant with large scale audio-visual systems.

Lip-Sync. Even with high speed digital vision mixing and projection, there can be an inherent delay of anything upto half a second (approx 12 frames of image) from the words being uttered, to the screen LED's doing their stuff. This means that even when stood at the front of the audience, Rogers wording on screen would be appreciably out with the audio. Even where the video screen relay is not used, the sound system will still have some delay built in at source (though minor), to reduce the occurance feedback from the main rig. Those 100yds out into the audience, will have an even greater impression of lip sync error, approximately a third of a second more. At Hyde Park there were delayed audio speaker towers which exaggerate this lip sync error further. It's all a question of physics, nothing more sinister....

The most impressive demonstration of this delay phenomina was at a Queen Concert in Wembley Stadium back in the 80's. During Radio Ga Ga, the folks at the front of the audience were on their second overhead clap, before those at the back had done their first. In between you saw a wave of clapping travel to the back of the audience exactly at the speed of sound - an incredible sight!

Nick Mason's drumming. We saw his energetic flourishes round the tom-toms on the giant screens during DSOM, but they were not in the sound mix!! I should know, I'm an audio engineer and drummer. Instead we had Graham Broad plays DSOM in the style of Rush - fair enough, but we all wanted Nick's inimitable a ever-so-slightly fluffing it style.

Lets hope the sound boys put him in fully at Magny-Cours, otherwise me and my anorak will make an appearance at the desk!

SHOW REVIEW

By Brain Damage contributor, Simon Young

What an awesome gig! Having never seen Pink Floyd "in the flesh", this was the next best thing (though I did see Roger perform the Wall in Berlin). It was like all my Christmases as once. And Dave Kilminster - wow! Definitely the closest copy of the real thing I can imagine.

Just want to set the record straight regarding any suspicions of lip-synching: there was a slight delay between what happened on stage, and what was shown on screen. The audio was synched to the screen. This was abundantly clear when watching the drum sticks being raised, and then seeing them raised a fraction of a second later on the screen. It was the same for all the support acts too, and I assume it has to do with the fact that speakers at large venues have different delays to ensure that the audience doesn't hear a "reverbed" sounds from the different sets of speakers in certain spots at the venue.

Anyway, long story short - NO LIP SYNCHING was involved at any time! And man, I just want to go and see it all over again.


 
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