Concert Review Archive

 

Roger Waters

Saterday, 9th April 2010
Gelredome, Arnhem, The Netherlands

Article By and photos byMenno von Brucken Fock

An album from 1979, a rock artist aged 67: could it be something? The answer is yes. nearly three sold out stadium concerts are proof of that! And not because the rock artist happens to be Roger Waters, but because of the importance of his contribution to modern music and progressive rock in particular. After several attempts to bring The Wall live to a big audience, this must be the ultimate revenge or to put it more friendly the ultimate satisfaction for the man who must be considered the main influence within Pink Floyd. Not that I ever would want to underestimate the role of Nick Mason, especially David Gilmour and the late Rick Wright, but looking back it must be clear to everyone the most important driving force must have been Waters. The veteran musician recruited an impressive cast of musicians and vocalists to make his dream come true.

Roger Waters

A quote from the man himself to 'justify' performing The Wall again after so long a time: "30 Years ago when I wrote The Wall I was a frightened young man. Well not that young, I was 36 years old. It took me a long time to get over my fears. Anyway, in the intervening years it has occurred to me that maybe the story of my fear and loss with its concomitant inevitable residue of ridicule, shame and punishment, provides an allegory for broader concerns.: Nationalism, racism, sexism, religion, Whatever! All these issues and ‘isms are driven by the same fears that drove my young life. This new production of The Wall is an attempt to draw some comparisons, to illuminate our current predicament, and is dedicated to all the innocent lost in the intervening years."

Roger Waters

Roger Waters

Most of you, our readers, might know The Gelredome usually is the home of Football Club "Vitesse" (Arnhem, Netherlands). Waters built his 'wall' from one side of the pitch to the other, even up to the grandstands on both sides. The opening act was equally bombastic and visually overwhelming with soldiers waving their flags and fireworks. Waters came on to the stage wearing a dark grey t-shirt, after a soldier dropped a doll ("Pink"), but soon after this scene transforming himself into an officer looking like a member of the dreadful Gestapo.

To emphasize the horrors of war there was a plane with a Maltese cross coming over from the far end 'crashing' behind the wall along with an explosion and fire. The projections on to the wall, used as a gigantic screen were truly impressive and throughout the show one could hardly distinguish between live images and projection.

A lot of the images from the movie were used but the Teacher appeared as a giant doll. From the city of Arnhem Waters managed to recruit a perfect kids choir: Group 8 from the J.F. Kennedyschool; they did a truly perfect job.



Roger Waters

Then on his acoustic guitar, Waters rendered an experimental version of Mother singing along with himself some thirty years ago on film. Waters, having lost his own father who was an RAF pilot in 1944, during World War II, showed his message is still viable and with images from recent and even current wars, it became painfully clear that mankind didn't learn much from all the horror in history and particularly from the events in World War II. Just before the break the wall had almost completely been closed and Waters sang Goodbye Cruel World from a space as big as one 'brick'. During the break endless series of photo's from victims of all kinds of wars throughout the world, emphasizing the necessity that mankind should know better and should be trying much harder to solve problems in a different way.

Roger Waters

Roger Waters

Pink had now been closed off from the outside world and the show went on with Hey You and Is There Anybody Out There. The hi-tech projections on the gigantic 'wall' were ever so impressive with images from the original movie but also much more recent footage was used. Above the center of the stadium a gigantic pig was flying around, also a spectacular site. My own father, a military man, adored Vera Lynn and I couldn't help thinking of him (and all the soldiers who gave their lives for our freedom!) when Vera Lynn, on that huge screen, sang part of one of her greatest songs "We'll Meet Again".

One of my all time favorites without a doubt is Comfortably Numb and for once it didn't seem to matter Dave Gilmour wasn't part of the show. With all the impressive theatrics and an impeccable solo by Dave Kilminster standing high upon the wall, this rendition sent shivers down my spine and I can't wait to buy the DVD that is bound to come out sooner or later. Of course tracks like In The Flesh and Run Like Hell went down smoothly as well and during Stop, The Trial the massive wall fell. This site of destruction and this grand finale had an impact on each and everyone. Waters, playing trumpet and the band came out one last time standing before the remains of the wall, playing Outside The Wall.

Roger Waters

Because of mixture of modern and older images, Waters' message doesn't same outdated at all. The man always had a great talent for sound and theatricals and this version of The Wall undoubtedly is the best ever. A perfect sound quality and the unsurpassed use of all technological means of present day have made the day for tenths of thousands of people, that have been to his shows or will be going in the near future. I could only wish the original album had been longer than it actually was, because I'm sure no one had the feeling they had had enough. Hail to the chief!!

Slideshow

Setlist
In the Flesh
The Thin Ice
Another Brick in the Wall Part 1
The Happiest Days of our Lives
Another Brick in the Wall Part 2
Mother, Goodbye Blue Sky
Empty Spaces
Young Lust
One of My Turns
Don't Leave Me Now
Another Brick in the Wall Part 3
Goodbye Cruel World

Hey You
Is There Anybody Out There?
Nobody Home
Vera
Bring the Boys Back Home
Comfortably Numb
The Show Must Go On
In The Flesh
Run Like Hell
Waiting for the Worms
Stop, The Trial

Outside the Wall

Links
Roger Waters Official Website

Gelredome

 


© 1996 - 2017 : Dutch Progressive Rock Page