October 15, 2010
The Punk Floyd
Reconfiguring The Wall from a self absorbed bitch session about isolation into an Agit-Prop paean to anti-war, Waters eradicated the rock star angst and showed that even millionaire rock stars can reinvent their most famous works into a far more cogent and compelling presentation.
Unlike the original self pitying premise of Old Pink, who blamed his problems on daddy croaking in the big one, women, teachers and success; Waters has turned The Wall into an outright attack on war, both past (WW2) and current versions. There are many visions of war and destruction (both personal and property) that are extremely disturbing. More than once I had to turn away. Waters is serving up harsh lessons along with the rock n roll.
Thus, "Mother" becomes a metaphor for the Government. "Run Like Hell" becomes an attack on polictics rather than a commentary on fascism in rock crowds; and the "Pig" becomes a vehicle for political sloganeering. Additionally, there were not so veiled attacks against mass merchandising (especially Apple), religion and big business. Punk Fucking Rock.
The actual show is mesmerizing and overwhelming. The Wall is built during the show; but with the various visuals and special effects, you hardly notice until all of a sudden, the band disappears. Luckily, we had seats directly opposite the stage, and were thus able to get the full head on presentation. Those with seats on the side lost the ability to view "through" the holes in The Wall due to the angles.
As far as The Wall being a Waters solo vehicle. It always was. Creatively, it was always his vision and Pink Floyd (especially Richard Wright) were session players in the original presentation. David Gilmour's presence is always missed, however, his role was filled by a singer who aped his vocals pretty well (if anonymously) and two guitar players.
There was a really neat part when they played "Mother" in which Waters dueted with himself (using video from 1980).
We ended up getting a pair of tix that listed for $300 for $100. And just got in as the show was starting. The only negative on the whole night was the $12 24 ounce can of LaBatts that I consumed. But that's rock n roll! Or something.
I CANNOT STRESS ENOUGH HOW GREAT THIS SHOW WAS AND HOW YOU MUST SEE IT IF YOU HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY! It was truly a landmark event that I will never forget.