donderdag 24 juni 2010

AC/DC Berlin Report!

UPDATE:
Pretty decent concert weather in the historical city of Berlin. I had a very smooth connection from Schönenfeld airport to the city center. Public transport is pretty well organised there, so you can fairly easy get around (you do need a map!!). Where are the days that we still could fly into Berlin via the great Tempelhof airport, through which the allies supplied the troops during WWII. They give concerts now in the old Tempelhof airport building and I was told that AC/DC was asked to do a show over there, but that it didn't fit the tour format of open air/stadium shows. Place of fanclub meeting was the (typically for Germany) Bier Garten at the Olympic stadium, built in the thirties by an infamous architect for another infamous historical person in German history. The (classified) building is pretty impressive though and has been refurbished a couple of years ago.
Queuing instructions echoed from speakers in the huge twin towers before the stadium, like in the thirties. After a VERY long wait (and a very slow ticket controller - who in tradition of German grundlichkeit took 5 minutes to neatly tear of the control strip of the ticket), we were finally allowed to enter the gates and to our surprise, we had to cross the entire length of the stadium to reach to front of stage area. That was an olympic discipline in itself. Halfway of the parcours, the boys got seperated from the men....
The band BOON opened up, and were pretty much enjoying themselves, and VOLBEAT opened in their known and very much straightforward style! Not loud or hyperactive enough for a great part of the crowd, but good fun.


AC/DC 's show took off with a BANG and kicked the 78000 crowd right in its face. Some (minor) signs of tour fatigue could be remarked by the attentive fan, but what else 'd you expect after 20 months of touring, doing 170 gigs in a highway to hell speed? I think the boys deserve a good rest and a nice time off after tomorrows show (Bilbao). The German crowd did seem to appreciate and went through the roof. Fans came in from all over the world, and gathered in Berlin for what was a long time announced to be the last show of the Black Ice tour, and maybe the last show ever. Brian screamed "Hell, I love this job!" which shows that we probably haven't seen the band taking its last breath. Much to the relief of the fans.
What's next to the moon? It's 15 million fingers picking! Idyllic images with the moon peaking into the stadium (upper left corner).


Great Scandinavian-Canadian-German rock steady crew.

zondag 20 juni 2010

PARIS - Stade de France - Report

Same place, same wonderful crowd, but then exactly 1 year later. The Stade de France has become a real homebase for the band and fans from all over the world. It's always fun to attend shows in this modern location with great facilities. At a preparty at Clichy, AC/DC coverband RiffRaff warmed up part of the crowd before heading to the stadium and see Slash ("Rock N Fucking Roll") and his new band heat things up. I always appreciated the early Guns 'n Roses music, when everything was still real and rough. Since the split, however, the remains of the Guns 'n Roses continued on different projects. Axl, solo, surrounded by the weirdest guitar creatures ever (from Buckethead to Jesus like Bumblefoot) has been working on a 'new' record for more than 10 years, and it still sounds unfinished.

Slash on the other hand, has been staying more true to Rock&Roll and performed Friday night the best opening act for AC/DC since the start of the tour. New songs (new album!) were swiftly alterned with GNR (Paradise City - Civil War - Sweet Child O'Mine) and solid Velvet Revolver (Slither - Sucker Train Blues) material. Singer Miles Kenedy (lead singer from Alter Bridge) has been doing a great job. I heard the guy suffers heavily from tinitus. But what a great voice!

The weather was just perfect. Not that same heat of last year. And luckily no rain either. An excellent atmosphere to roll in the R&R Train! Great crowd (red horn lights blinging all over) and band in good shape with a great (same) setlist made the evening a big success.After the show there was a nice afterparty at an Irish pub near Chatelet Les Halles with another excellent AC/DC cover band (forgot their name, so let me know if you remember - they rocked until the morning hour!!) and friends from all over the world (Italy, Vancouver, NYC). Exclusive guest to this party was an inflatable Rosie. Sure she got what she came for as she was passed on through the venue. See you in Berlin!

(all pictures -except for playlist- courtesy and copyright 2010 of Mad Max from Tours, thanks man for letting me using them since I was so stupid to forget my photo camera....)

zondag 13 juni 2010

DONNINGTON report

Hello there! I had a fabulous time in Donnington last weekend. Here's already a hand full of pictures. I'll write a report around it in the upcoming days. Download was an excellent opportunity to see the brother bloggers from Abruzzo and AC/DC Italia again, and also meet some new friends (Shane, you'll be happy that this site finally got updated again...).

UPDATE: Attending the gig was my sole mission on Friday. The only flight still available for Friday was the BmiBaby flight that arrived at East Midlands Airport at 20h15, knowing that the band would start playing at 20h30. We all know that the band's time schedule is a very tight one, so no help from there. I had made sure that all I packed was "hand luggage" so that I was ready to rush to the festival grounds, 3 miles away from the airport, as soon as I landed.
Those interested can contact me for advise on how I smuggled my tent, sleeping bag, cloths for 3 days and musquito repellent into the overhead compartment. The customs confiscated my tent pins (10 in total) because I could have killed somebody with them. Bet my right hand knuckles are more dreadful than those blunt tent pins ends... Anyhow, to cut a long story short, the flight came in 15 minutes earlier. I missed the first 20 minutes of the show. The RNR Train video kicked off when I entered the (enormous) festival grounds, so I was able to hear everything clearly though. I knew I had to hurry up when I heard Brian scream: "I can smell the rock and roll here". Last time I heard that was in the 2003 Hammersmith Odeon gig, and that just blew the roof off. Not any less this time.

Shot Down in Flames has a perfect running rhythm (the band should consider selling the song to a Start to Run program) and while shouting the chorus I bounced my way up front, right in time to witness The Jack. Angus must have thought in vain about the numerous times he had been stripping on the Bad Boy Boogie, when he noticed that only few women were showing their assets. Not that it poured cats and dogs, or that it was too cold: I really experienced my first indian summer in England. You could bake an egg on Phil's cymbals. And I didn't have any place left in my hand lugage to bring sunscreen, so I returned home as red as the letters in AC/DC's logo. Talking about the logo, it was missing on all festival communication, but hey - I came for AC/DC in Donnington - Download was just bonus.



Of course I won't keep this courageous birdie for myself....

The pleasant thing about England is the generosity of its pints. They were more than welcome after this very nice open air show, with an ever lasting Let There Be Rock performance, a nice atmosphere, a whole lot of people and a real good warm up for Friday's show in Paris. See you there!
Setlist (thanks JJK for being such a good timekeeper!)

RnR Train

Hell Ain't A Bad Place To Be

Back in Black

Big Jack

Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap

Shot Down in Flames

Thunderstruck

Black Ice

The Jack

Hells Bells

Shoot to Thrill

War Machine

High Voltage

You Shook Me All Night Long

TnT

Whole Lotta Rosie

Let There Be Rock (18 monutes long)

Highway to Hell

For Those About To Rock (9 minutes long)