So we thought we had seen Chris at his best in Hannover, Germany, and were looking forward to his gig in the Rockhal (yes, it is written with only one 'l') in Esch sur Alzette. But what a difference in accoustics and sound!
The hall in Hannover being a huge sports hall converted into a concert arena when needed has a quite good sound, mellow and soft, giving you the feeling of easy listening. The Rockhal in contrast is a pure concert building, with concrete walls, a gallery for the lightening, seats and nothing else. Thus the accoustics are merely astonishing: When Kirt Rust started his first beats for The Last Open Road one could really feel them coming into the body, so hard and cristal clear was the sound. Chris' guitar sounded so strong and fierce that I have the impression that his bluesy mood has changed into a rocky one. If that means he is feeling better and stronger, I'm very happy about that! But it was surely a difference to his Hannover gig in 2010 and even stronger to the DVD/CD set recorded during his Farewell Tour, which I think are absolutely fabulous. So the concert gave us a hard and intense impression, a new Chris who improvised on his soli differently from Hannover (or was it just the accoustics?) He played his Still so Far to Go so fast and intense that it was merely turned into a 'So Fast to Run'. He left us after 1 hour and 45 minutes (video of Somewhere Between the Stars included) vibrating and with tingling eardrums, a feeling that we definitely enjoyed, but that was unexpected.
So, it was a great experience to have been to the two concerts and to feel the difference. I really hope that this has not been the last tour and we are looking forward to more...
One drop of bitterness has to be added to my impressions: Why did so many fans come into the hall after the gig had started - many as much as twenty minutes too late, standing in the aisles, discussing with the usherettes and blocking the view of the others who had taken their seats on time???
A little bit of icing and an extra cherry on our big, fat piece of cake was that we had the pleasure of meeting a window shopping Sylvain Marc in the Belval Plaza shopping mall one and a half hours before the concert! We talked for some minutes and he didn't mind (or at least I hope he didn't) our approach and he was really funny and gave us the feeling as if we had known him for longer.
So after all a great weekend to remember...
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