Tag Archives: pink floyd

Roger Waters The Wall: Live

28 Oct

I have to say, this was certainly the summer/fall of big name, stadium concerts for me. First there was Weezer headlining the Basilica Block Party, then Rush at the State Fair, followed by Gorillaz and NERD at the Target Center and last night, I witnessed Roger Waters perform The Wall at the Xcel Energy Center. As far as spectacles go, this was the best concert I have seen. It’s pretty much a performance piece. A giant 40 foot wall, video projections, fireworks, lasers, crashing planes, breakdancing kids, huge puppets and a flying pig! I didn’t have the greatest seat in the house (as that would have cost over $250) but for last minute tickets, it wasn’t that bad. And on the plus side, the Xcel probably has the best sound system in the Twin Cities for big concerts so the acoustics were great. However, the one spoiler to this concert – and I have to assume this goes for most Pink Floyd concerts – are the potheads. I’m pretty sure that if Cheech and Chong could conceive, their man-love child was sitting next to me. Dude was stoned and drunk out his mind! Not only did he try to talk to me throughout the first half of the show, he was crooning along to the songs before they were even out of Roger’s mouth. Sorry dude, but you don’t get any pot brownie points for knowing the lyrics before they are sung. Also, I can hear my own crappy voice at home, so I don’t need to hear yours at the show.

As the concert progressed toward the intermission, the wall continued to be built and the pothead continued to toke up and take swigs of whiskey. But his buzz was about to be harshed by me at intermission. As the lights came up and people streamed out to piss, he began to frantically search around under the seats and in his jacket pockets. What he was looking for was his glass pipe that looked exactly like a cigarette. How do I know this? Because it was under my foot. I hid it from him and eventually, when he began to play with his phone, bent over and cunningly (or probably clumsily, but it all looked the same to him so who the fuck cares) picked the pipe up off the ground and proceeded to head for the nearest trash bin. I walked around a bit with it in my pocket and saw the bin in question, but when I got there, thought better of it. That’s right, I ended up recycling it. I saved the environment, and also my concert experience because dude left during intermission and I didn’t see him again. If he did show up again, I didn’t know about it because I was way too deep into Comfortably Numb to care… and also because we slid over and totally jacked his seat for the better view. Yes, I am ruthless like that.

As with the album, the second half of the show was better than the first half. But overall, this show was something that I won’t soon forget and was the most visually over-the-top concert that I saw this year. If this concert is coming through your town and you haven’t gotten tickets yet, be sure to grab some up. Also, be sure to not do drugs for 40+ years of your life. That shit will mess you up.

 

Link to close up pictures of first half of show.

St. Paul Landmark Center

St. Paul Landmark Center

The Wall

The Wall

My Seat

My Seat. Not great, but whatcha gonna do?

In the Flesh?

In the Flesh?

Right after plane crash

Right after plane crash

The Wall Intermission

The Wall Intermission

In the Flesh

In the Flesh

Run Like Hell

Run Like Hell

Outside the Wall

Outside the Wall

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Comfortably Pink

30 Jun

So, I went and saw a Pink Floyd tribute band last Saturday. Overall impressions? Not too shabby. However, there are a few things that struck me. Not so much like a chunk of ice falling from the sky, hitting me in the head causing deep, debilitating mental problems and retardacy (is it made up? find out now!), but more like getting general impressions over the few hours it took to take in the show.

Impression the first. I am not as overly enthusiastic about seeing Pink Floyd live as I thought. There are two reasons for this (though admittedly there are probably more, but these are the two biggies). Reason A) It is not really Pink Floyd. Obviously that’s like the first thing that everyone knows, but they actually did sound good and played the songs as they were and it was a deece show. Reason B) There are people who get overly excited for a tribute band, and those people are freaks. Not monsterously overbearing freaks like the kind you see in movies or in ever major metropolitan area, but freaks nonetheless. They get up and dance, wave their hands, shout out “Free Bird” for no reason and wear hats advertising Kmart… and not in an ironic way. Dude really did own a Kmart hat, and he wore the shit out of it.

Impression the second. Apparently, Pink Floyd only made two albums. I base this on the fact that almost every song they played came from either The Wall, or Dark Side of the Moon. Only two songs in their repertoire did not. Those songs were “Learning to Fly” and “Dogs.” Now, I can understand the reasoning behind this move, mostly because those are the two they are most famous for, but Animals is a great album that deserves more attention (although I assume the reason more songs are not played off of it are because almost every song is like 15 minutes long. But there are much better songs than “Learning to Fly” out there.

Impression the third. The encore. When you are a tribute band named Comfortably Pink, you would think your encore would be “Comfortably Numb.” Not only is it a great song, its one that keeps building and building to a great conclusion that is overflowing with guitar solos, drums, bass and all sorts of awesomeness on a level that not even fire ninjas fighting hovercraft flying dinosaurs can compete with. However, they chose to end their set with “Run.” This song is high energy and is pretty good, but if you stop and think about it – as I tend to do – this is the song they play during the movie wherein there is a forced rape. Hmmm. So, to recap, a song that is fire ninja vs. hovercraft dino awesome (and which the band is named after) or a song that reminds me of the rape scene in the car. Whatever, it’s your show.

Impression the fourth. Rain kinda sucks when combined with my glasses and streetlamps and headlights. Also, my bike has no lights on it. I feel that I cheated death pretty well that night.

Pictures are below. If you want to experience them and the crowd they gather, they will be playing at the Whiskey Junction in Minneapolis on July 10th. It’s indoors, so you don’t have to worry about the rain. You will still have to worry about freakoids though.

Comfortably Pink - Lake Harriet Bandshell

Comfortably Pink - Lake Harriet Bandshell

Comfortably Pink - Lake Harriet Bandshell

Comfortably Pink - Lake Harriet Bandshell

Comfortably Pink - Lake Harriet Bandshell

Comfortably Pink - Lake Harriet Bandshell

Ten Epic Songs of Epicness

4 May

What makes a song epic? Does it simply have to be long? Convoluted? Perhaps have a profound backstory to its conception? Possibly. But for the purposes of this list, I have come up with ten epic songs that I feel are both epically long and epically rocking. How did I come up with this list you may ask? Well, it all started from this picture…

Three Men in a Lobby

Check out those sweet moves!

Ok, so not really. But it is an interesting picture isn’t it? For those who don’t know, which is many, this picture was taken on the day of the home opener of the Twins in celebration of their new stadium. CAN YOU GUESS WHICH CITY I WORK IN?!!!?? Anyways. I like the picture and these guys were really cool. They were very entertaining and had to be so for a long time, much like the songs on this list. Of course, the real culprit for getting me thinking about this list is this other list here. As you can see, assuming you clicked the link, is that many of those songs can be found on my list as well. The reason for this is that the author of that site and myself both have similar tastes in music. You will probably be able to decipher from my list that I really enjoy rock music, and, more specifically, a genre called Prog Rock, which is filled with the Pink Floyds and Rushs of this earth (as you can see, I’m especially fond of Pink Floyd). Anyway, on to my list, which is in no particular order. Also, pretty much all of the videos can be found as hyperlinks attached to the artist and song title at the top.

  1. Led Zeppelin – Achilles Last Stand 10:25
    I found this song by happy accident and loved the drums and guitar. Not only do I think it is one of Zeppelin’s better songs on an album that is not given enough credit, it would be badass on either Rock Band or Guitar Hero! Dammit Led Zeppelin, get with the times already. I chose the live version of this song for the video simply because you can watch Jimmy Page shred that guitar hardcore.

    Led Zeppelin Presence

    Led Zeppelin Presence

  2. Metallica – Outlaw Torn 9:59
    I don’t know who did it first, but when you add an orchestra behind a major rock band, the results are spectacular. Outlaw Torn is from the 1999 live album Metallica recorded using the backing of the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra conducted by Michael Kamen. Though I love a good, simple hard rock song, adding the orchestral score pumps it up even more and gives it a thoroughly epic feel.

    Metallica S&M

    Metallica S&M

  3. Pink Floyd – Dogs 17:06
    This song is 17 minutes of bliss. It is typical Floyd as well, starting off with a faster section, accompanied by a driving guitar solo in the middle and then slowing way down for the middle interlude before picking up again at the end with a flurry of lead guitar and drums. I’ve heard this song many, many times and it never ceases to get me going.

    Pink Floyd Animals

    Pink Floyd Animals

  4. Funkadelic – Maggot Brain 10:21
    Look no further for your epic lead guitar solo. You can actually feel the emotion running through the fingers of Eddie Hazel. It seems to encapsulate exactly what he was told to think about while playing, namely that his mother had died in the first half, and then came back to life in the second. It plays out beautifully and is even more spectacular when you consider it was all done in one take.

    Funkadelic Maggot Brain

    Funkadelic Maggot Brain

  5. Rush – 2112 20:34
    The simple fact that I could only find this song in three separate parts is testament to the epicness it embodies. The fact that I am going to witness this band’s awesomness in person later this year makes this song even better (though I doubt they will play it, but I wish they would).
    Part 1

    Part 2
    Part 3

    Rush 2112

    Rush 2112

  6. Dream Theater – Octavarium 23:58
    This is another band that I had never heard of before seeing the original list. I know nothing about them, or their music outside of this song, but I really appreciate this song for making me get lost in its entire length. A rare quality. In fact, this song starts off in a Floydian tone before delving into something akin to hard rock before taking that epic Floyd departure at the end again. Great stuff.

    Dream Theater Octavarium

    Dream Theater Octavarium

  7. Pink Floyd – Shine On You Crazy Diamond (Parts 1 and 2) 26:00
    Another Pink Floyd song, and this one is split into two parts. It is actually a nine part composition in tribute to the former leader of Floyd, Syd Barrett. This is one of those classics that most people will know the instant the first chord is struck. If I could, I would probably listen to this all day long.
    Part 1
    Part 2

    Pink Floyd Wish You Were Here

    Pink Floyd Wish You Were Here

  8. Lynyrd Skynyrd – Free Bird 9:06
    Ah yes. Skynyrd. This is the song that is constantly being politely suggested – by which I mean drunkenly yelled out – for every band in the history of the world to play. Right now, there have been 2,174 instances of this happening. However, the song itself is a rocking epic that is nine minutes long and one that, once again, pretty much everyone knows the tune of. Here it is, in its entirety, for your listening enjoyment.

    Lynyrd Skynyrd

    Lynyrd Skynyrd

  9. Iron Butterfly – Inna Godda Da Vida 17:05
    You can almost hear the psychedelic drugs coursing through their veins. And that bass line! Its hypnotic in its simplicity, yet makes everything about this song work. and makes the song come alive. And with a song being this long, it makes for fantastic solo work as well from every member of the band. I would love to see this video in full color, just to see the funk and colors and what their dreams must have looked like every night. Bonus: the Simpsons take on the song as well.
    The Simpsons Version

    Iron Butterfly In A Gadda Da Vida

    Iron Butterfly In A Gadda Da Vida

  10. Pink Floyd – Echoes 23:28
    Echoes is one of those tunes that is not known by many people. This is mostly because they have such a huge catalog of other hits that this one tends to get lost in the shuffle. It is also because it was not on a record of theirs that sold in huge numbers. This song was before they really took off after Dark Side of the Moon, but is one of their better tunes. This is another one of those that is normally broken into two parts, but I found it in its entirety, although it is synched up to the final part of 2001: A Space Odyssey for some reason. I recommend simply listening to it without the visuals, as they are distracting.

    Pink Floyd Echoes

    Pink Floyd Echoes

So, in this list alone, should you actually sit down and listen to all of the songs here, you will have a grand total of 167 minutes of music! How awesome is that? For some, not very; but for others, it is a great way to get into the rhythm and spirit of some grandiose songs that are too long for conventional radio, but perfect for making the day fly by. If you have any suggestions for anything that you feel would best be on this list, let me know. Or, perhaps you hated every selection. Either way, drop me a line and let me know.