Tuesday, August 21, 2012

New Music: The Congress, Whatever You Want

My second review for TSE is about a Josey Wales hot-iron branded power rock trio from Richmond & Denver appropriately called The Congress. They take rock music seriously, as you can tell by the compositions, but not so seriously that they're not having a good time. It's the perfect work to fun ratio.

See for yourself...HERE.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Roger Waters The Wall Tour Finale, Quebec City, The Plains of Abraham, Road Trip Log

Seven years ago, on the date of July 20th, I moved to NYC with the dream of becoming something. I don’t know exactly what, but I’m pretty sure it had something to do with creating the written word. Back then; I may have still had delusions of Mad Men grandeur, that is, if I really wanted to officially use my official education in Advertising. I don’t see myself ever working at an ad agency, however, the beckon and call of rock shows continues to leave me in salivating pursuit of every ticket, wristband, blanket and rocking space I can get myself into.

A few weeks ago, I saw a life-changing concert at Yankee Stadium. I’m sure my friends are tired of hearing about it, but the Roger Waters’ Wall show is something everyone must see. I was so impressed I knew I needed to see it again! My thinking was, I rarely leave the city, much like Tom Green in Road Trip I find myself banging on my friends Zipcars as they mock me for never leaving the vicinity. They vacation and I continue to sweat sadistically in the concrete jungle toiling in the throngs of server Hell. The toughest part of deciding to quit a “real job” to become a writer/server was the loss of paid vacation. It makes it so hard to match schedules with friends and/or go on any kind of proper vacation. It can be done; it’s just not as easy as requesting the days off and taking the money out of your bi-weekly paycheck.  

No retreat, no regrets.

Enough of my whining, though blues songs LOVE to use the number “seven” in their songs. Seven years in the city, propelled by a life-changing concert on the seventh day of the seventh month. I have to go to Quebec to see this right?

The following is an approximate diary of the events as I remember them…

Friday, July 20th

10:00 a.m., E.S.T. – Time to get up for work! Oh yes, the job I hate so much, I couldn’t get the day off, therefore I couldn’t join my comrade, simply known as THE MAN, for the journey there, because he had no other choice but to venture to Lake Champlain to renew his passport. Apparently, that’s the only location that had same day passport renewal on such short notice. Yeah, we didn’t exactly plan ahead, but I feel that’s part of the fun of a trip of such unhinged kinetic energy.

10:15 – I always am in search of motivation for my prison sentence serving shifts. Obviously, with my Quebec adventure locked and loaded, I decided to watch the Waters video again. Thoughts of the “bigger wall” loomed in my head, swirling with the preposterousness of a 250-meter (820 feet) wall and increased pyrotechnics, along with the promise that the sound system will “shake the entire site.” Distractions and “the audacity of hope” make prison easier.

3:00 p.m. – Apparently, THE MAN has to wait for six hours for his passport. Poor guy. At least he doesn’t have to ride on a Greyhound bus like I do, which is exactly what’s in store for my night and early morning. It’s supposedly a seven (BAM!) hour bus ride to Montreal, and then a three-hour bus/train from Canada’s transport system Orleans Express. Due to his passport issue and my work issue, we’ll just have to meet up in Quebec City. Hopefully, I can get some sleep on the bus, which should be aided from my hangover stemming from a late-night, drunken, “special baking session” I had the previous night. That will certainly make the border cross a little more entertaining.

6:00 – I’m home and packing. The express Greyhound leaves in a couple hours, and if you know anything about my Greyhound history, you know I want as little to do with Greyhound as possible. Unfortunately, for as awesome as it is to take trains, the scheduling is quite anemic, rarely allowing me the pleasure of a company I don’t despise (grrr….Greyhound) and extra foot room. The biggest issue I have with Greyhound dates back to a trip I took from NYC back home to Grand Rapids. To make a long story short, the bus was filled, just chock full of really, incredibly horrifyingly smelly people. This is an understatement. One particular offender of my nasal passages walked in wearing a helmet, and just wreaked (double entendre?) all kinds of special. This bus was like the Con Air for the lower class ridiculously troublesome looking trash. It just seemed like bad news. But, it pressed on. Needless to say, the guy in the helmet took his helmet off and headed for the bathroom. It just seemed askew. Time passed and everything seemed OK until there was this putrid smell from the bathroom. This is when everyone remembered the helmet guy had probably been in the bathroom for about 45 minutes. People were looking around, making eye contact, just wondering to oneself “is this really happening.” And, like a bad movie, it happened…the guy came out of the bathroom covered in feces. He walked the aisles and people were screaming, again, like a horror movie. It was at this time, I was glad I had a window seat, because people in the aisles were in grave danger of touching this guy as he walked back down the aisle like a shit cover swamp monster! The bus driver started screaming on the microphone for him to get back inside the bathroom. I don’t remember how, but he actually DID eventually walk back into the bathroom.

Then a large African American man, again, you can’t make this up, said “I’m sick of this SHIT” and slammed helmet guy into the bathroom, to which the whole bus gave practically a standing ovation. Everyone at this point became bonded by the incident and people started breaking out cologne and air freshener, but really, nothing could crack the smell. Either way, it was helping and people were talking with one another and working together.

The bus was about 45 minutes from its destination, Grand Rapids, MI, which was about 2.5 hours into the Detroit to Grand Rapids leg and about 23 hours into the Ryan C. Zerfas leg. I was torn. People wanted the bus to stop, I wanted to get home. This is when helmet guy started pounding on the door. The African American “door jam” was screaming “NO FUCKING WAY!?” in a tone only possible for black people. I’m not trying to be racist, but seriously, they have a way with tone and words that can’t be replicated by other races. He took control. We all loved this guy. The bus driver was screaming into the microphone for the guy to stay in the bathroom.

Eventually, he got back out. I don’t know if the “door jam” fell asleep or what, but helmet guy came back out looking cleaner, but very disoriented. Everyone was screaming. This part, was actually the most chaotic, because many were yelling to stop the bus. The bus driver was screaming back that she wouldn’t stop the bus. People were standing and doing the “asshole point” in the aisles. It was one of the most chaotic things I’ve ever been a part of. How the hell do you not stop and throw this guy off the bus? I’ll never know. It went on like that for about 15 more minutes until we reached Grand Rapids. To which there was a HUGE line at the complaint desk. We all got a number and vowed to call it.

So, I called the Greyhound line the next day and proceeded to tell this tale in further detail. I think I impersonated every character involved to the best of my ability. At least a 20 minute monologue to which the operator said, “I’m sorry about that.”

I said, “that’s it? No refund, no vouchers, nothing?”

She responded that, “she’s sorry I had to go through that.”

After a few awkward pauses, I didn’t know what to do, so I said goodbye. She didn’t even seem the least bit moved by the story. I mean, really? No emotion, no nothing over THAT!? Are. You. Serious.

I vowed never to take Greyhound again, but you know how that works. They are always the cheapest option and in the RCZ graph that favors time over money, sometimes you must make decisions based on your lowest plot point. Money. Damn.

Fuckin’ Greyhound.

9:30 – My love of Greyhound continued, as it appears the bus is full. I was 5th in line. I decided it was prime time to have one of the little pieces of special brownie I made for the journey. If I get accosted at the border, at least I would have been able to have SOME taste of my brownie making labors. Actually, I didn’t do any of the work, my buddy did as my apartment doesn’t have an oven. I know nothing about drug use as I never touched any for the first 30 years of my life, but, the few brownies I’d had previously were made with a lot of “schwag” type stuff. Cheap. Shitty. Good for cooking and putting in brownies. We used pretty decent stuff in a smaller quantity, but since it’s typically more potent (again, I have no idea) we figured it might be like “rocket fuel” and be down right deadly. Seems like the perfect agent to have for a Roger Waters’ Wall show?

10:45 – I finally was able to get on a bus. Hurray me! I was starting to feel the effects of the brownie, seemingly, and I threw in Animals a weird little Floyd album between Wish You Were Here and The Wall, which to my knowledge garnered little acclaim. I’ve heard people talk about it, but it’s certainly not on the medal podium with the other three. I know I’ve tried to listen to it in the past, but could never get into it. It has five songs. There’s essentially three songs titled “Pigs” and then there’s two songs with different animals; “Sheep” and “Dogs.” Two of the songs are about a minute long while the others are between 10 and 20 minutes in length. It’s trippy. Imagine that, right? Basically, to me, it sounds like lo-fi Pink Floyd with more cowbell. I definitely was digging the cowbell.

11:01 – When slipping into unconsciousness the guitar work on “Sheep” seems to embed itself into your brain and go right to left across the territory without regard. You can feel it shake itself out inside your brain like a tuning fork. It’s quite an exquisite feeling. I bet it’s even better under “more influence” or under “more unconsciousness” but, the song remains epic nonetheless. This could be a favorite and something to revisit next time I really get myself brownie blitzed.  

11:11 Animals with a little bit of research appears to be quite a critique of society. “Pigs,” “Dogs” and “Sheep” are representative of different classes of people, loosely based on George Orwell’s Animal Farm. Dogs = the combative rebellious. Pigs = Tyrannical power hungry rulers. Sheep = Herded followers. Neat.    

11:59 – I can’t sleep on these fucking busses, man! I’m trying all the usual tricks. There’s a skinny girl with a nice smile next to me, but she keeps encroaching on my space. All she talks about is her boyfriend, so, I find this to be disconcerting. STAY ON YOUR SIDE!!! I’ve tried Norah Jones, my favorite sleep agent; I mean this in the most endearing way possible. There is nothing better than waking up on a Sunday morning (if you have a normal schedule), going back to bed and having Norah Jones lightly playing, tickling the senses with that smoky voice and those intricate key lines just fade into your subconscious. It’s so pleasant. Iron & Wine is another one. I bought a book about the history of Coney Island, it’s huge, and history class looking, but it’s so interesting it’s peaking my attention. Can’t have that. I need sleep. The MAN just sent me a text that I should get some sleep, because we’re going to “hit the ground running” tomorrow. All I could say in return was, “Jesus.”

This Plains of Abraham painting looks just like a Pink Floyd cover. 
Saturday, July 21st

4:00 a.m. EST – Bars are closing in NYC and I’m about to cross the Canadian border. I have no idea how this works on a bus. In my head, a customs agent would walk the aisles and get on identified peoples’ cases as seen fit. Like, perhaps, a smelly special looking man in a helmet? But, there is a special section for busses and we pulled off into this dark corner, to which we all had to exit the bus, gather our gear, and engage on a one-on-one interview with a Customs agent. Yikes. At least it wasn’t busy. It was just us from the bus. I do, however, have to show some sign of caution. I have a Tupperware container with some buried brownies that may interest some folks. All they need to do is bring out the hounds. I moved slowly and observed others conversations. Some had extremely long conversations and some seemed to be reminiscent of Monty Python and the Holy Grail consisting of questions about your name, quest and favorite color. I didn’t see any hounds or need for concern to move to plan throw out Thursday nights’ labors.  

4:11 – It’s my turn. I get the Monty Python treatment. The Gods’ must know I’m a big fan. On the third question I get an, “enjoy the show.” Ooooooooh…..if only you knew, guy, if only you knew.

5:45 – I arrive in Montreal. Boy, did that city look cool from the bus. Needless to say, the senses are critical when your knees are buckling like Tom Beringer in Major League and you’re sleep deprived. Eventually I zonked off after the border possible fiasco, but not for long. That driver although, a chain smoker, (he must have put four cigarettes down during our 15-minute stop) really knows how to keep a tight ship. He kept good time and it’s one of the only times I remember flying by other cars…while riding a bus. We arrived before the slated time of the ORIGINAL bus I was supposed to.

6:30 – Oh yeah. Everything is in French!? I still figured out when my bus was leaving, because Quebec City in French is…yeah. I thought I was going to have to leave the station to find the train station, but there was a bus to Quebec City right there departing in 45 minutes, and I was told that the train station didn’t open until like 10am, which would have cost me “hitting the ground running” time. Then, I ran into “encroach my space” girl who was waiting for her cousin to come pick her up. We then engaged in a very awkward conversation. I should have just walked away. Why does this person think I want to talk to her? Even if I were single, which I’m not, I wouldn’t want to hear more tales about your boyfriend. I don’t care? Why do people think I care? I don’t. Most people I like or flat out enjoy, I don’t care to have these conversations with. Silence is ok. Getting the fuck away from me is better.

8:30 – I think I’m sleeping. Awesome. This bus is pretty empty allowing me my extra space. I can stretch my crimped legs across the seats and stretch a tad. I have to, because some rude people made an inconsiderate decision. A group took the seat ahead of me and the two seats to my left. The person to my front left, put the seat all the way back, severely encroaching on her friends’ space. To which the person in front of me made a wonderful suggestion, “use my seat so you can go ALL THE WAY BACK.”

I replied, joining the conversation, rudely, but seriously, “I don’t like that decision.”

They laughed. I laughed back, squinty, mocking them. And the cunt switched seats, putting her seat all the way back anyway.

This is why people hate the French.

9:00 – I have arrived in Quebec City. 12 hours to showtime. I just need to find a way to meet up with THE MAN at the hotel. I have no idea where I am or if I’m in the “old” part of the city like I need to be. I ask a nice lady at the breakfast counter (a nice western sandwich) and she say, “oh, you’re here for the show.” Which pumps me up, because, it makes me feel the power of the spectacle I’m about to take in. Apparently I’m a 45-minute walk from the Plains of Abraham.

9:12 – I’m getting a feel for the city already. Very, what I would imagine a European city would look like, with cafĂ©’s and such on the streets. Perhaps, that’s just the quintessential French stereotypes beginning to permeate through my pores. Everything is hilly, as the cabby is rocking and winding through the streets. And I thought the NYC cabbies were the professionals. This guy is legit.

9:24 – I meet up with THE MAN and we partake delightful hotel activities like pooling and hot tubing. There seems to be only a 5 degree difference between the two, but hey, it’s sunny outside and I can see the back of the wall from the pool chairs. We’re onsite: Lock, stock, ready-to-rock!

11:34 – We head to lunch. The main decision now: How long do we wait to get tickets? We figure out we can buy tickets at the venue, for now, and I don’t think it’ll sell out, but we’d love to find a scalper with the sold out “VIP Front Row.” The downer of waiting is the slight chance it sells out and the price gets jacked and the lines at the ticket booths become vast and unruly, wasting precious party time. Hmmmmmmmm……

2:00 p.m. – Walking back from lunch, we’re parallel with the hotel, not close, but eye distance from the venue and the familiar sound of The Wall helicopter shakes right to left across the sound system. Even walking away in the distance it was loud and quite palpitating. To Waters’ credit, he is a control freak that makes DAMN sure the sound is good from anywhere in the venue—in this case a few football fields away walking in the opposite direction of the intended sound, it’s still crystal clear. For some reason, all the things I’ve read about Waters “controlling” every step of the process implants an image in my head of Waters up on top of the mountain wiring the very back “surround sound” speakers to his rig. Wire cutters and all. I wouldn’t put it past him based on his Howard Stern interview.

4:00 “Let the Journey Begin”. The brownie strategy is set. I’m going to consume 15% of my supply in the pregame and the remaining 85% two hours pre show, which should be the perfect mixture. I had never mixed special desserts and alcohol before the baking session on Thursday, but they seem to compliment each other like mash potatoes and peas. Just drinking beer typically makes me tired after awhile and the special desserts seem to give me focus. Perhaps that’s all internal.

5:45 – The scene is ridiculous. What started out pretty slow like a typical day in quaint Quebec City has blossomed into a full-fledged shit-show party. You’re seeing kids of all ages, though more graying baby boomers in black nostalgic Floyd shirts with that unflappable artwork are flocking into bars for pre game drinks. I know myself; I’m feeling a slight glaze of the eyes while milking some monstrous Hefeweizens. The lemon in my beer is a bobber, bouncing boisterously, as my anticipatory glands anticipate a crescendo. Rock departure is near.

6:15 – THE MAN and I disagree on the concert strategic plan. He wants to chill on the hill taking in the experience from the back, while I would like to not be 90,000 rows away from the stage. It’s one of the reasons I am for all intents and purposes anti-festival, because I imagine standing for hours to watch something happening 300 yards away would be anti-climatic. Especially in this case with all the time and money put in. In my head, we want to be as close as possible. The downside is as decrescendo as imaginable, in my little chemically enhanced noggin. 

6:25 – We settle the check and go. I think this is a good decision. As we leave the bar, there is a steady downhill pour of people to the venue. The show has literally taken over the streets. The scene reminds me of cattle. It’s absolute pandemonium and chaos. People are chanting, jumping over barriers and punching babies in the face. Some people are simply stumbling around. Others have been on-site up front camping out for what must have been days? The traffic flows to a standstill as the line is filtered around the most ridiculous maze I’ve ever been a part of.

Seemingly, anytime we were about to make up ground and make a progress towards arriving at the gates, the maze takes another detour. With so many people, it’s essentially like walking in the dark. I wish I had a walking periscope like the driving periscope in Curb Your Enthusiasm. This maze included a stop at the port-a-Jons that found myself walking around the line and peeing in the bushes—right next to a couple of hot girls that were ass-naked squatting themselves’—let me tell you, they had good flow and the view from these eyes was real and spectacular. Like a trickling crick. I’ll never be able to remove that image from my head and sickening enough, I don’t want to.

All in all, it takes about two hours to get our spot in the field. Luckily, enough people wanted the hill that we were able to find a reasonably close place to set up shop.   

8:45 – What a spectacle. Beer vendors are wading through the crowd with cardboard beer boxes on their shoulders. Fans are buying them six at a time. I’m surprised you don’t see more of this in field-based venues. It saves time and there is always money to be made when you offer convenience. I’m surprised at how unglazed I feel at this point. The plan was I should be seeing Roger Waters floating across the deserted plains by now. Our hotel with the spinning roof is in full view. It’s pretty neat to have your hotel be a part of the view on a trip of this magnitude. It couldn’t have worked out better.

9:14 – I open my flip phone and the 14 rolls to a 15 in perfect cadence to the band taking stage. These guys do not fuck around.

9:16 – Roger Waters doesn’t need the money. He’s 68 years old and set for life. I think what makes him want to continue this Wall show, is the M.O. is essentially “I’m a badass.” About 100,000 people (I’ve read numbers from 70,000 to 110,000) lined up for miles to see him complete this over the top introduction that begins with shooting fireworks during a roaming “hi!” and ends with a plane driving into the wall, all the while crunching out rock staple, “In the Flesh.”      

9:22 – The groove of “Another Brick in the Wall” is irresistible. The presentation of it during this show is having Waters out front slappin’ the bass while all the lighting makes it seem as if he’s embedded as a living, bass slapping creature in molten lava. The lava flows as Waters remains steadfast. The bass line is so groovy, yet the song itself is so patient as it takes many layers and subtle movements before exploding into the chorus everyone knows, “We don’t need no education!” Every stop on the tour he has a group of local kids clapping from side to side along with him as the arraignment of the song progresses into full fledged rock immortality.

9:29 – Every mothers’ dream is to have a song like “Mother,” right? This is the point in the show when Roger likes to address the audience. For this particular show, he pulled a paper out of his pocket and recited his speech about terrorists and “fucked up younger Roger” in French. Most banter for this show was in French. Impressive. He then proceeds to play the song as a duet with a video from the 1980 tour. For some reason I was feeling semi-critical, with my arms folded thinking, “maybe he only does it this way, because he can’t sing it anymore. He’s too old.” Perhaps he’s such a control freak as well as obsessed with his mother that he can’t bare to let anyone else in the band sing it. Only Roger and Roger alone can sing about his mother.

9:47 – This is my favorite sequence of The Wall. The “Goodbye Blue Sky,” “Empty Spaces,” “Young Lust” segment. The grooves during the “Another Brick in the Wall” segment in the top part of the album are thunderous, but this part just makes me want to break my neck, jamming. The guitar work from Gilmour on “Young Lust” is just sick. I never realized it until I heard this show full force at Yankee Stadium, but his ability to flip between clean blues chords, bend and then flick a slight screech is enough to make me weep from over-exertion of emotive tones! Even though I was trying to be critical (apparently) of the show due to my lack of “special high” and lack of sleep, this segment of the show had me jumping up and down in glee.

10:15 – The band goes through another, “Another Brick in the Wall” segment and then to the last song before intermission, “Goodbye Cruel World” which signifies that the wall has been built and the isolation of the character (Pink) is complete. Waters peers through the last brick to say the final word of the song, “Goodbye” and then there is an intermission. Through the intermission pictures of veterans; past and present appear with mini bios. Semi haunting, but what would you expect. This is an abrasive Roger Waters rock show!? Many describe it as a religious experience and that comes with some blood, sweat and tears.

10:30 – Intermission is over and the opening chords parade into listeners delight as the albums strongest song plays. About this time in the show, my desire to be “critical” finds me wondering how the vocals on “Hey You” are so clean. I’m thinking they are back injecting Waters with cortisone shots and massaging him up, while the backing band takes heed of the situation. I’m thinking, “this is too clean…he’s not singing…he can’t be singing.” Only to find out in retrospect, that intro is vocal is Gilmour’s. Even so, once Waters chimes for the big rock finish of “Hey You,” one can consider themselves’ ROCKED. I can see why the high schooler in The Squid and the Whale would want to take credit for writing this song, hell, I want to have written this song. Elton John wishes he wrote this song. Epic.

10:39 – I consider this part of The Wall the waiting for “Comfortably Numb” section. I won’t say it’s a dead spot, because I think the true dead spot is later, but, there isn’t anything between “Hey You” and “Comfortably Numb” I salivate over. I do LOVE the part when Waters emerges from the wall to sing a song from the bedroom, which looks really cool when he’s like 30 feet in the air.

I’m waiting….

10:45 – Yesssssss. The higher wall makes the guitarist and singer look incredibly stunt worthy for being so high up. The Gilmour voice is up on top of the wall and when the guitar solo comes, that guitarist then plays that part (not G.E. Smith) levitating to the top of the wall. Pretty neat watching performers kind of isolated up there. During all of this Waters goes back and forth from the sides of the stage. It doesn’t seem like he has a ton to sing in this song. It looks really cool nonetheless.

10:50 – The show picks up considerable steam during this segment. Waters seems like he was behind the wall guzzling Red Bull as he begins to take control and “earn his money.”

10:56 – Until this moment, I didn’t see a ton different with this show. It seemed like the same amount of pyrotechnics and the wall itself was bigger, but most of that was just extra white graffiti space at the edges. The real “game-changing effect was on “Run Like Hell” the stage shot white light into the sky, much like how NYC used to light up the empty space of the twin towers with what seemed like a 100 foot wide Maglite. This featured a dozen or couple dozen singular beams of white light seemingly going from the stage to the end of the stratosphere. It made you feel like you were seeing the biggest stage in the history of the world. Perhaps…we were. It was a badass effect. I was now won over. Critical period over…THIS IS A RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE!!!!

11:00 – After “Run Like Hell” I usually stop listening to The Wall, but like many things, it’s like Waters knows this and this is where he really amps himself up. There is a huge cartoon scene, where I’m actually not sure exactly what’s going on, but the image is communicating a great deal of passion as Waters seems to know this is the finale and gives the singing everything he has. You find yourself chanting “TEAR DOWN THAT WALL” even if you’re in the most hipster of moods. This is an example of the religiousness of the show. It’s hard not to get into it. Eventually the massive white beast is torn down and everyone goes crazy!!!!

11:09 – Under the ruins, everyone comes out from the wall and plays essentially an “unplugged/acoustic” military line version of “Outside the Wall.” Everyone is thanked profusely and the backing band is introduced. I was hoping they would play another song for the finale concert, but really, would it have been THAT awesome if they came back out and cracked into “Time!?” Ok, yeah, I would have loved that, but certainly one can’t expect something like that. It’s a fantastic fucking show and I just saw it on the biggest scale. I’m floating on a little piece of white wall at this moment. Funny enough, I heard people were able to take pieces of the actual wall with them. If only I would have been more astute in making this happen. Would there be a better piece of rock memorabilia? I don’t see any on E-Bay, so perhaps the concierge was pulling my leg.

11:59 – It takes awhile to get out of there, but the scene outside was even crazier than before. Perhaps everyone is loaded and looking to party some more! The streets and bars are just JACKED all the way back to the hotel and beyond. Sirens, flashing lights, the bat signal—it was allll happening. Made me think of East Lansing on a big football Saturday after a worthy win. Roger Waters apparently, just won the World Series! I’m embarrassed to say, I pretty much got some post-game food and crashed. I was so tired, but again, such a rewarding experience.

Having seen the show before from such an askew angle, all the way in the corner, it was nice to be dead center and pick up on some of the things happening on stage and in the videos that I wasn’t able to see the previous time out. It also helped being that much further “into” the material.

Last Bricks

Getting up the next day, the place was a desolate ghost town!? Many of the bars, shops, etc weren’t even open. We wanted to get a nice steak for lunch before departing and all the places that seemed good and recommended, were closed. We decided to forfeit the steak and just eat on the go as we have a 10 or so hour drive remaining. Well rested from the hotel and a nice walk in the sun around the surrounding area before departure had my spirits quite high. Anytime I see something incredibly moving it effects me for many moons. I guess that’s why I write about music.

Like anything addicting, it leads me to think about what’s next? Is this it? As scheduled, this was the last show of a tour that started in 2010. Rumblings and gut feelings from interviews have me believe that Waters will do a European run next summer and then perhaps trickle into the states.

I know what you’re thinking…what a great excuse to go to Europe (it would be my first time) right?

The Wall all started because Waters became so angry with a fan, that he actually spat on the fan and theorized himself building a wall between the audience and performer. That kind of anger spurs creativity and wonderful art. I typically claim that depression is the best creating agent for music, but when delve into the creative genius of Waters, I see it doesn’t always have to be depressive. It can be a healthy use of anger. Anger has energy. The only solution for me, from here on out, is to use my own anger and transgressions in a positive way. Write more. Read more. Listen to more Pink Floyd. They have their finger on the pulse of creativity. They just took more chances than most bands.

If this show truly is a religion, the message is projected as clearly whether on an 800-foot wall or fuzzy set of headphones: Find something to get angry about and rip it to the ground. Much like the NYC audience tore flying pig apart (I wonder if he was pissed he had to buy a new pig. If he did, how many of those pigs does Waters bring on tour? Is it like baseballs for a baseball game?)!? Anger when properly channeled can be the best source of motivation. It’s my time to use Waters as an example, collect my finest basket of zeal and work (run?) my way (like) out of hell, because I’m sure as shit not a sheep and the show must go on.

Trust Us.  

Monday, August 6, 2012

Music Review: Future History, Loss:/Self, My Steam Engine Debut

Read my debut, a review of an awesome album titled Loss:/Self by a band called Future History, for The Steam Engine here.