On this past Friday I had the extreme privilege of seeing Roger Waters, Bassist/Lyricist/Vocalist of the legendary Pink Floyd, perform one of the most beloved albums of all time: The Wall, at one of the most legendary venues of all time: Wrigley Field. (Hey. Cubs fan here howyadoin')
Over the past 3 years I've grown to be an extremely extreme Pink Floyd fan. The Wall is not my favorite (That would be Animals) but I'll be damned to say that the theatrics of the album does not absolutely move me.
No surprise guest vocalists, unlike the awful Berlin 1990 performance, no Broadway actors, no David Bowie-live vocals for the two 'In The Flesh' performances, just Roger Waters, his band, and ONE BIG @!? WALL.
The projections on the Wall were, for the stoned, entrancing, and for the sober, like me, breath taking. Using the cartoon animations from the movie for songs like Empty Spaces/What Shall We Do Now and The Trial (Which I will get to in a moment) and mixing them with modern age CG animation, and tons of technical stuff that I can't begin to explain, it was completely impossible not to get sucked in to the feeling of "HOLY SCHNIKEYS I'M WATCHING SOMETHING LEGENDARY."
Now it is really hard to point out any negatives of the show, but there's one that sticks out to me. The musical freedom. There really isn't that much. Aside from a second guitar solo to Another Brick In The Wall Part 2 (Which has been in Roger's live set since Pink Floyd's original 30 show The Wall tour) and a keyboard solo in Young Lust, it seemed like every guitar note played was lifted note for note by David Gilmour himself. I love Gilmour. I wish he were here with Roger playing live. And I love his solos. But Roger has three guitarists. (One being Snowy White who was the second guitarist for the last two tours Roger did with Pink Floyd) I know the animations cause for time constraints, but the notes within those times, no fills, no improvisation. Something beloved of Pink Floyd and their live shows.
Back to the experience though. From local Chicago kids joining in for Brick in the Wall part two and fighting off the teacher puppet, to the tear jerking footage of soldiers reuniting with their families, to a balloon pig/boar (it had horns) with fascist statements written all over them released during the second In The Flesh (which ended up Crashing into the crowd during the Trial and literally ripped to pieces by the Chicago crowd,) to an extra part of Brick in the Wall dedicated to a man falsely identified by London police as a criminal and executed in a subway, these all added to the experience. Most rock bands add things to their live performances that are completely disengaging and unnecessary, but all of this just felt right. Like the statements that they said felt completely right within the confines of the legendary album.
In short it was the best $150 I've ever spent in my life, and if you get a chance please do see this show in concert. And if you do, if you don't lose your voice chanting "Tear Down The Wall" like I did, you do not have a soul.
I don't know if this is allowed here but I did take video which can be found at my YouTube channel Here. I have 11 videos up. But don't let this be your experience. See it in person!