This is my first post, so a couple of words about why I'm on this forum. I got hooked to Glenn's voice listening to Burning Japan Live some five years ago. I've seen him twice on HTP tour in Helsinki, 09/2002 & 03/2004. Great shows, but they left me wanting to see him tour solo.
Which is what happened this Wednesday in Nosturi, Helsinki. Long was our wait but was it worth it?
I went with my brother and a friend. We arrived in time to see the whole set of The Lizards. I didn't know their music beforehand, had only read some descriptions from previous shows. I must say it was a positive experience. Not enough to make me buy their cd at the show, but still. Most of the songs they played had something good in them, although as a whole I think many of them could have been a bit shorter and thus would have worked better. Dunno if album versions are different to what they played live. Not too many people were watching the show, although a bit more came in all the time. The Lizards handled the gig nicely though and welcomed all to come say hi to the band after their set. I couldn't leave my spot though, since I wanted to see the next performer well...
About half an hour later the intro, a different mix of Soul Mover, started to play. Nice intro. Then the curtains were opened and the band got on stage and started to play Soul Mover, a song which me thinks is a killer opener! Great stuff. After that they went straight into Orion. The studio version was the first song on the album to really get my attention and it worked very well live also. It was clear from the first moments that energy levels at the venue were taken to new heights with Glenn & band entering the stage!
After this song Glenn did a bit of talking between the songs, like telling something about the songs and their meaning or just commenting something funny. He also explained what this tour means to him as a solo artist, why there aren't too many Purple or old songs on the setlist (which was the same as before) although he knows many DP fans are coming to the shows and so on. And the audience understood and responded with cheers hearing SM to be Glenn's best selling solo record so far.
Glenn's between-the-songs - talking gave a very nice feeling to the show, which was further richened with his way of performing: very much in contact with the audience, noticing everybody and giving big smiles. We watched the show from Nosturi's second floor "loft", right corner from the stage which was partially obscured by loudspeakers, and yet GH observed our reactions to the music several times and was pleased to see our thumbs up and clapping, I guess! He was in a very good mood, humorous, energetic and pouring his soul into the performances, in a different level compared to the HTP shows I had seen before. Those high notes and the power with which they are delivered just make your jaw drop! And his moving around the stage is great to watch. I had a discussion after the HTP shows about Glenn's and Gene Simmons' similar moves and it was so funny to read on the forum recently that Gene had actually copied the posing from Glenn. Gabi was at the show too, I guess we have to thank her also for her husband's good vibrations
All new songs worked very well live and old & older ones we're performed brilliantly. Land of the Livin' was great with upper register chorus singing, Let It Go an intense autoanalysis moving ahead with an irresistible rhythm coupled with those beautiful calm parts, Don't Let Me Bleed emotional and, as a surprise highlight for me, High Road groovier than a midnight blue soul train with its steam engine driven by Austin Powers and rockier than Mr. Balboa. Can't Stop the Flood is very good live and lyrically fits Glenn's current situation as a witer and performer, I guess. Medusa - what can I say, a true classic masterpiece! Wherever You Go wrapped up the main set nicely.
And as already mentioned by others, Mistreated was...just amazing. Well worth its own thread. Intro by J.J. was short this time but the "vocal acrobatics"- part in the end by Glenn was even greater than I dared to expect. I guess it lasted about 2 minutes or so and not a second was in vain. Left us speechless. I wonder if it was recorded... You can see the intensity with which it was performed from the photos sent by others. Seventh Star & Burn made a great encore and after Burn it was as a thunderstorm had suddenly stopped.
I was pleased with the setlist, although it could have been a bit longer (as you all think, I guess). There are so many songs I'd like to hear... About many SM songs, I think this is just what a creative and actively writing & recording artist should do: play new songs. Would have liked to hear even more from SM.
All in all, a very enjoyable and energetic show absolutely worth seeing. It was great to see Glenn enjoy what he's doing and I'm sincerely happy for him being able to perform at this level. He's no youngster anymore. His voice, maybe a bit darker than in the 70's, remains untouchable and this man IMO certainly is the most relevant artist today amongst his contemporaries and, needless to say, wipes the floor with many a today's big name. Well, I hope The Flood keeps gathering momentum and the next time we'll see Glenn in Helsinki it will be in the Icehall.
Go see the show. And take your friends & relatives with you.
I think that really, really awesome, well written, review sums everything - how we Finns experienced Glenn's second solo concert in our country!
Arnito - did you join PSOF (www.psof.fi) or are you perhaps already a member?
great well thought out review by someone who it is easy to see loves glenns music hope i can write something like it to you all one day
Great review and also very relevant for the Stockholm gig Friday night. Brilliant show with a just great, positive atmosphere. So fresh that he does not rely on past glories and instead pushes his new material, which is up there with the best he's done. BTM, SITKR and the new one all are up there, and its great that they relatively get so much attention (wouldn't have minded more songs from BTM and SITKR).
I had a fear that I would leave the gig with a "seen it all before feeling" (he's played in Stockholm, alone or with HTP, 8 times since his return in -93), but thankfully that anticipation was proved wrong! I couldn't agree more that the he obviously is the most relevant of his "generation". He's making up for lost time and he's doin' it very, very well.
He mentioned during the show that people had flown in from Switzerland, Germany and also Japan - fantastic!
Fantastic,well written,intelligent revue of a concert you clearly enjoyed.
Well done that man
This is my first post
Arnito - I wish my first post on here had been as informative! Brilliantly written.
Lord, there are some intelligent people on these boards ...
... and no doubt you're still smiling broadly from the wonderful experience
I very much agree with Arnito. A great show that would have been a bit longer. I think Glenn should have played more of his solo stuff from the earlier albums, though. You know, song like You Kill Me, Death Of Me, Big Time, Livin' For The Minute, I Got Your Number...Now that he had a chance to do it!
It's a shame that Nosturi wasn't enough full of people. Finnish people don't seem to understand the greatness of mr. Hughes!
I even got a chance to shake the hand of the Voice Of Rock (he was wearing a glove in his right hand - I guess he was trying to prevent getting a flue). Backstage was very silent and Glenn seemed to be a bit disturbed (I understand him!). - but he was very kind. It would have been great to have some time to talk, but because I was ought to be brief (understandably), I just told him how much I love his work and etc. All the stuff that everyone would say if one gets a chance to speak to someone like him! JJ and Gabi were both very kind, also.
Hope Glenn will visit Finland soon again.