Saturday, February 2, 2008

Smashing Pumpkins, 31-01-2008, Vienna

As previously mentioned I went to a Smashing Pumpkins concert on Wednesday and I have to say it was probably one of the best live performances I've ever seen.

But let's not get ahead of ourselves here because the beginning of the concert was actually quite disappointing. Not only was the support band (some Austrian band) quite boring, the audience significantly smaller than I had expected, the light-effects absolutely horrible and the PA setup rather shitty. To top it all of Smashing Pumpkins started with a couple of relatively quiet songs which combined with the total lack of bass coming from the speakers (as Patrick put it: "I still felt my own heart-beat so something was definitely missing.") which reminded me of a quiet evening in the living room. Of course when you're going to a rock concert the last thing you want to be reminded is a quiet evening.

But somehow, I can't pinpoint the exact moment but it was about 30min into the show, they completely turned around the evening. Finally all the parts of the puzzle seemed to come together and it all started to make sense. Billy Corgan seemed more relaxed, the music picked up in both speed and intensity. There were lots of acoustic sessions with just Corgan singing and playing the guitar. Also the guitar-solos became better and better and some sessions were really outstanding. The only thing that remained an issue throughout the evening was the lack of drums and base being audible to the audience. Other than that the 2h 15min concert really felt like a live event with many songs being played significantly different to the recorded versions, some hilarious talk by Corgan ("Billy can't hear you. Billy only hears the voice in his head.") and just in general a great atmosphere. All in all €42 well spent.

I'm going to leave you with a photo of reverend Billy Corgan preaching to the audience:

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