An open air show in Amsterdam was never going to be as good as the two rehearsal shows at the Olympia theatre in Dublin that I saw last year (read ‘An exercise in terror and music‘), but it was still lovely
to see R.E.M. again, 21 years after my first time at the MCV in Utrecht.
We arrived late and the gates to the circle had already been closed. Bummer. But we joined the small group of people hanging out near the gate stage left. We were let into the circle the minute the gig began. Score!
The crowd was a bit tame – a bit ‘festival’ – and the band seemed a little rusty. Stipey was on autopilot the first few songs, although he loosened up nicely later on. The set was a brave mix of new and old songs, but the crowd only really responded to the older ones. Great to hear Drive and Orange Crush though, and I was happy they did Until the day is done.
There were lots of Dutch Twitterati in the park, but I decided not to join them. Going to gigs is not about drinking or dancing or having fun with people for me. It’s about the music, the performers and the magic that happens between what’s going on on stage and myself and my own memories, thoughts and experiences.
Seen: Amsterdam, Westerpark, July 2, 2008
1. Living Well Is the Best Revenge
2. What’s the Frequency, Kenneth?
3. Bad Day
5. Man-Sized Wreath
8. Walk Unafraid
9. Hollow Man
10. 7 Chinese Bros.
11. Driver 8
13. (Don’t Go Back To) Rockville
14. The Great Beyond
15. The One I Love
16. Until The Day Is Done
17. Let Me In
18. These Days
19. Horse To Water
20. Orange Crush
21. I’m Gonna DJ
22. Supernatural Superserious
23. Losing My Religion
25. Pretty Persuasion
26. Man On The Moon