Roger Waters "The Wall" 5.7.12
Words By J-man
Photos By Bryan Berkowitz
The Pepsi Center was buzzing, from the hippies outside to the folks attempting to locate their seats. I couldn't recall the last time that I had seen an arena show. Spaced out faces wandered around the outer ring of the venue, purchasing drinks for the show and connecting with friends! It was quite the scene, feeling like a sporting event, but looking like a massive musical gathering. Shortly past 8:00 pm, the building of The Wall began. With the entrance of Roger Waters to the stage, the near sold out Pepsi Center erupted with applause!
The production began with "In The Flesh" and some ripping guitar work from the lead guitarist. Immediately it was clear that this show, would be unlike any show that I have experienced prior as the grandiose performance unfolded. The skeleton of The Wall extended all the way across The Pepsi Center and shined bright with vivid imagery. A plane flew through the stadium, crashing through The Wall and triggering explosions and intense pyrotechnics.
"Another Brick in The Wall" brought the audience to their feet as people danced and sang along. Through epic perfection, Roger Waters' band tore through classic Pink Floyd material. Beyond the flawless material were fantastic aesthetics such as inflated puppets and monsters of sorts. At one point during "Mother" Roger announced that he would be doing a duel vocal track with himself from years ago. Sure enough, a younger image of himself appeared on the screen and off they went. Additionally a group of children came out to dance in unison with Roger, fending off one of the large puppets. The icing on the cake was the level of consciousness the performance featured with Roger Water speaking out against war, the establishment and recognizing many fallen soldiers and civilians.
As the show went on, The Wall was constructed in front of the band, using cherry pickers and lifts until only one section of light shown through. Roger peered through before the set concluded and The Wall was sealed. I was blown away by the perfection of the first set and taken back by the large scale conceptual approach. The lights came up in the arena and some sitar music began to set the vibe.
Following a short break the lights went down and folks rushed to their seats as to not miss a minute of the event. The second set began with Roger on portions of the The Wall that came out and appeared to be a living room set up. Images invoking fear, sadness and intense emotions dashed across the vibrant and stimulating screen. Animations that synced perfectly with Roger's vocals captivated the crowd, with Waters eventually dawning a trench coat and a Tommy Gun in front of soldiers and huge columns.
The performance concluded with Waters and the Denver fans collectively chanting "Tear down The Wall..." and The Wall crumbling to the stage. As the Pepsi Center roared as Roger Waters and his band gathered in front of the rubble to perform two acoustic tracks for the adoring concert-goers. I have no criticism whatsoever to give about what I witnessed that night. I can only express that it was the best rock production that I have ever had the pleasure of experiencing. Tickets are not cheap, but the show is well worth every penny!
*Special thanks to Bryan Berkowitz
Set One: In The Flesh, The Thin Ice, Another Brick In The Wall (Part 1), The Happiest Days of Our Lives, Another Brick In The Wall (Part 2), Mother, Goodbye Blue Sky, Empty Spaces, What Shall We Do Now?, Young Lust, One of My Turns, Don't Leave Me Know, Another Brick In The Wall (Part 3), The Last Few Bricks, Goodbye Cruel World
Set Two: Hey You, Is There Anybody Out There?, Nobody Home, Vera, Bring The Boys Back Home, Comfortably Numb, The Show Must Go On, In The Flesh, Run Like Hell, Waiting For The Worms, Stop, The Trial, Outside The Wall