Spectacle: (noun) anything presented to the sight or view, especially something of a striking or impressive kind.
This is the only word capable of describing what took place inside Bankers Life Fieldhouse Monday, June 11th. It was made very clear that Roger Waters is a master of the theatrical concert performance after the Dark Side of the Moon tour in 2006 (it might have been 2005, I can’t remember), but Roger has expanded his horizons yet again with The Wall. Bite the bullet and buy the ticket, experiencing this production is well worth the price tag.
Walking into the venue I noticed smoke was accumulating in the hallways, I knew I was late. Shit! Sprinting to my seat I was able to get there just as “In the Flesh,” or, “The Thin Ice,” The Wall’s opening tracks, were coming to a close. A children’s choir joined Roger on stage for these first few songs. Was this a staple for every city, it was a local choir, after all? Regardless.
Looking up at the stage I was immediately awestruck by the magnitude that was “The Wall.” Made from white, canvas-wrapped metal frames, the blocks were progressively placed during the first set of the show to finish it’s construction right before intermission. This is the exact moment captured in the photo above, with Roger walking through the wall just as the last few blocks were put into place. Safe to say I was weirding my neighbors out at this point; not necessarily as a Pink Floyd fan, but as a live music fan, I completely geeked out. One of the best produced moments at a concert I’ve ever witnessed, Arcade Fire’s ball-drop at Coachella is a close rival.
The second, and better, half of the show/album included more visuals that I won’t attempt to describe in any way other than incredible. Unless fireworky, paint drippy, roman architectural, explosion of light and color sounds better to you? Like I mentioned, the second half of the album is no doubt my favorite, and when you hear classic albums, or songs, played live by their original artist like this, it really makes you reflect. Sitting in the upper deck, a friend of mine shared a moment she had when she closed her eyes mid-show. She explained that all she could think about was witnessing a guy that has withstood the test of time, playing an album that is as relevant, and sounds as good, now as it ever did. Corny as it may sound, she’s so right. I knew when Roger announced this tour that I had to go simply because, how many other chances does one get to see something like this?!
What I took away from the show, mostly, is that most of the bands that are popular today, or at least on this site, are nothing, NOTHING, compared to Pink Floyd. Pink Floyd is an institution, akin to the status The Beatles or Bob Marley have achieved. This wasn’t a newly acquired notion, but was extremely reaffirmed with the production that went into making The Wall come back to life. Roger Waters definitely has his critics, but one thing they can definitely agree on, is the guy knows how to put on one hell of a show.