CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Europe and Israel (July 1 - September 24, 2009). Concert reports, set lists, photos, media coverage, multimedia links, recollections...
UrPal
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby UrPal » Thu Jul 16, 2009 12:41 am

It was my eighth show & I was a bit worried I might be jaded never mind LC. But as before I was held entranced by the music from beginning to end. Although the setlist was mostly made up of the same old songs there were enough changes of emphasis & mood to make the show seem like a different experience. For example, LCs vocals & stage moves seemed more subdued, prayerful & melancholic on Anthem & Hallelujah. What had been the show stoppers lost emphasis in the set as a whole but still shone in a perhaps more subtle way. Heart With No Companion presented an opportunity for LC to realise his country band front man dream & he took on the mantle of Hank as if a ghost. Waiting For The Miracle throbbed & hung heavy in the air with all our messianic disappointments. As others have said it was good to see LC fronting the band with a guitar for most of the second half & using it in ways you could detect in the detail.
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burningviolin
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby burningviolin » Thu Jul 16, 2009 12:43 am

Liverpool last night was my first LC concert so this is my first report!


Hello to all who were at the meet up, would really have loved to have met but the logistics of it didn’t work out for me, had to pick up duplicate tickets at the box office, so sorry to have missed you all!

Firstly I have to say I thought the venue was really great, would definitely go to concerts there again and the staff were also friendly and helpful.

Anyway, so I greatly enjoyed the concert, it was like watching one of those epic movies, you know you’re taking in one of the layers of the plot but you know you need to watch that movie again to get the deeper layers! Can’t say I felt emotional except I was very happy to be there! The pace the concert moves at is relentless its quite amazing! The audience is barely finished clapping and the band is off again into another song. A real credit to Leonard Cohens stamina and that of the band. I can add to that the ‘The Skipping’ (God Bless his energy even with a cold!)

I thought the atmosphere in the first half was quite subdued. Maybe everyone was just trying to take it all in and were listening closely but I did think it was a bit odd when there was silence after the solos at times. People were definitely a bit livelier in the 2nd half though there was nobody standing up for the encores. I’d read this has happened elsewhere (standin during encores) and I was kind of looking forward to an opportunity for a bit of a boogie to First We Take Manhattan (which was really rockin’!).

One of the first things I noticed was the lighting. Neither the DVD nor YouTube captures it in reality, the colours are so lovely and vivid. A simple stage design but very effective!

As for the sound, I felt there was a great blend. The group were really performing as it were as ‘one voice’. It was almost so perfect that at one point I wondered, wow, is this actually live?! In fairness this was coupled with my sense of disbelief that I was actually at the gig I had been looking forward to for so long and is meant as a compliment to musicians and sound engineers. Was it me or did the volume increase gently from the beginning to the end of the concert? It was clever in that the volume seemed to be at such a level that it gave the musicians room for getting louder without it being too soft or uncomfortably loud. I loved when LC dived down for those deep notes bass notes as I could feel the vibrations of them a little which was cool!

Overall I felt LC was in good form, sounding great and looked to be enjoying himself despite seeing him blowing his nose at one point. He is naturally a thin man but I thought he was looking a little bit more so than usual.

Margaret I noticed there was something a bit funny happened in the middle of Halleluiah but I didn’t think it was down to LC. I’m probably reading too far into this but there seemed to be no applause after Neil Larsons organ solo (?)and it was as if there were an extra few bars where there should’ve been applause or the audience was given a few extra bars in which to applaud but nobody did? Maybe he was just wondering what verse to sing? Anybody else notice?

There were a few other slips I think, a repeated verse in Tower of Song and Neil Larson seemed to be a bit enthusiastic at the start of First we Take Manhattan, starting into it before the Webb sisters and Sharon Robinson were ready to sing but I have to say I forgive them! As a musician myself who is used to performing it’s ‘nice’ to see that even such highly accomplished and tight knit group are actually human and even they make the odd mistake! Also made it more ‘live’ as I mentioned before.

So highlights for me are many: Getting to hear LC perform live! Well that’s obvious but CD’s and DVDs are wonderful but he is such a live performer it has to be heard to be believed! He really gives his all in performance and is so present in it. I also loved hearing a turn a phrase a little differently or different inflection thats so subtle but it brings out something different in the music. I'm in my late 20's and have been to concerts/gigs where I would've been better off staying at home and putting on the CD as the sound quality was better and the performer sang/played exactly the same as they do on the CD. the kind of craftsmanship that LC puts into his music and also the musicians that are playing with him is really important and arguably rare.

Also for me a big highlight was hearing those first few notes of ‘Suzanne’ (and then obviously the rest of it!,) but I think you understand what I mean. I've never heard him sing it before so it was a 'wow' moment. Also. I love to hear him chuckle which he did in the middle of one song . FBR was also a highlight.

I was disappointed not to hear 'Whither thou' but I'm hoping it was a time constraints thing rather than LC wasn't feeling well. He did say something at the start of the 2nd half like 'we tend to play on and on but we'll start again because I know you've got trains to catch'...The concert seemed to end abruptly.

The person I went to the concert with is not an LC fan but made a very interesting comment which I think says it all in that, it didn’t feel like we were in a big arena at all. It was more like we were in a theatre that holds about 70 people! The amazing thing was to turn around and see however many thousand people behind us and you almost think...woah, where'd they all come from!

I’d like to say thank you very much Leonard Cohen and the Unified Hearts Touring Company for a really lovely evening, it was a great privilage. God bless you and health to all of you.
Last edited by burningviolin on Fri Jul 24, 2009 9:15 pm, edited 4 times in total.
2009 Liverpool 14/07/09, Dublin 20/07/09, Belfast 26/07/09, Lisbon 30/7/09, Barcelona 21/09/09.
2010 Sligo (x2), Lille 25/09/10 Las Vegas 11/12/2010
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sturgess66
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby sturgess66 » Thu Jul 16, 2009 1:44 am

From Echo.co.uk

http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/liverpoo ... -24158106/
Leonard Cohen review: Arrival of a ladies man at the Echo arena

Jul 15 2009 by Marc Waddington, Liverpool Echo

WHERE music is concerned, the term “legend” is bandied around a bit too much for my liking. But where Leonard Cohen is concerned, forget the Beatles and Elvis – he’s right up there with King Arthur.

With a voice like he’s just been exhumed from a deep grave of whiskey and cigarettes, Cohen is one of those who most of the uninitiated greet the name of with some witty jibe about his greatest hits being called “Now that’s what I call suicide” or some other such jape.

But no, at last night’s ECHO Arena Summer Pops outing, Cohen was about as summery as you’re going to get.

He may be ageing, he may be looking like a cross between Tony Bennett and Leonard Nimoy these days, but he is still quite energetic for a man who by rights should have been drawing his pension for nearly a decade.

At 74, Cohen cuts a mysterious figure. Having, it appears, joined the elite of Van Morrison and Bob Dylan and all other ageing troubadours who take to wearing fedoras to hide their well-earned baldness, he is by no means as backwards in coming forwards where the audience is concerned.

In fact, he regularly engaged with the audience in that famous, deep Canadian drawl like a priest presiding over his congregation.

And he turned it to good effect when layered over the top of one of the tightest bands to be seen at the Arena for some time. While some of us may prefer to hear the likes of Bird on a Wire and Suzanne rendered just with Cohen’s voice and acoustic guitar, the treatments of his oldies were sympathetic and understated, although the tempo was pretty much the same for every number.

Most of the old favourites were there, including the recently butchered Hallelujah and So Long, Marianne, interspersed with some more recent numbers which showed that no matter how old you get, if music is in your blood, you never run dry of inspiration.

If any songwriter and musician deserved to be referred to as a poet, Cohen is that man, and if anyone deserved the respect and adulation of a Liverpool crowd this summer, again, he is that man.

OK, so he is often interpreted as morose, but it’s all a question of perspective. At first There’s a crack in everything might sound defeatist. But qualify it with the line ‘it’s how the light gets in’, and you realise maybe Cohen is of a sunnier disposition than most of us.

Still Cohen strong: 9/10
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby brokenhill » Thu Jul 16, 2009 2:15 am

What really amazes me after several of these concerts is how surprised I am by a particular track or two at each venue, but never the same ones. Having seen one of the Opera House shows I went to Edinburgh thinking I "knew" the set, and was totally blown away by Boogie St, a track of little significance to me previously. Later, was it Cardiff or Bournemouth, a phenomenal "Anthem" just shook me to the core, again I'd only really noticed a couple of clever lines before, but it was nowhere near my favourites list.

But by last night, six concerts in ( or eight if you count IOW 1970 and 1985), surely there could be no more surprises in the set. But there was, and perhaps the most unlikely of all - it was last nights rendition of Bird on The Wire! It's been superb everywhere but in Liverpool was just transcendental!

Briefly - to hear "Heart with no Companion", excellent! - The sound crew still definitely deserve knighthoods, you were stunning again guys/gals! - DO stay in the Premier Inn if you get the chance again, my room had a 300 year old vaulted brick CEILING!!! - And finally a big thanks to our oft maligned railways, who I entrusted for the first time with delivering me, in wheelchair, half way across the country, and at every pinch point was met seamlessly by friendly help with the appropriate ramps or lift keys or whatever was needed.

Was there any flaw in a fabulous couple of days? One moan then, cos I'm a right old moaner really :o)

If some of us are going to applaud when we recognise the intro, and some when we recognise the words, and yet more when ever Dino picks up an instrument, and even yet more when a quiet moment misleads them into thinking the number is over (twice in one track at one point!!) - Then something like 20% of some numbers will be drowned out by applause. So please please please - If you like it, enjoy it, wait til the end, and then go berserk! - Moan over, No way could anything so trivial spoil the perfect concert, Thank you Leonard and the band, Good night all!

ps One day I promise to arrive a day early so I have enough energy to seek out and meet up with a few fellow posters:o)
Still reliving every second of:1970 Isle of Wight, 1985 Birmingham, 2008 Manchester OH , Edinburgh, Cardiff, Bournemouth, Birmingham, 2009 Liverpool and ................ :o)
dawnb
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby dawnb » Thu Jul 16, 2009 2:17 am

Another great night from LC! Although unlike other people who have posted, I thought that the acoustics in the Echo arena aren't all that good. Its the first time I've been there, and from where we were sitting on the floor you could hear the music, especially drums, bouncing back from the back of the hall (no wonder its called the 'Echo' arena!), a bit distracting at the start where the sound didn't seem as loud as it did later on.

LC was fantastic as usual, as was Sharon Robinson and the Web Sisters on their songs, and great to hear a slightly different arrangement on Boogie Street. Even though Leonard seemed to have a cold it didn't seem to affect his voice in any way at all, but seemed to make his performance on some songs even more intense.

The only disappointment for me was the audience, who seemed subdued, and some around me seemed to think we were in a library - a man further down my row was very aggressive towards the man behind him who was singing along - telling him to shut the f*** up, and the bloke in front of us told us off for being rowdy, although we were only singing along a bit too. But it didn't spoil our night, it was fantastic to see LC in Liverpool, something I'll never forget...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7FeI8cDLbr8 - I've uploaded my video of Tower of Song, a few people get in the way as they get to their seats, but not too much.
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caz
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby caz » Thu Jul 16, 2009 2:51 am

DSCN0757.jpg
DSCN0806_2.JPG
LC.jpg
Haven't got much to add to what others have said, so I've uploaded three of the images I took on the night. I didn't get any images that look as sharp as the ones Wendy (Mabeanie1) shared on another thread (despite her helpful instructions, for which thanks!), and these are ones I've uploaded quickly just to share: not sure what they're going to look like. Hope this works! (The black and white one is a bit Photoshopped as I took it from the screen - it was rather grainy and needed a bit of a helping hand!)
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby MaryB » Thu Jul 16, 2009 6:19 am

burningviolin,

So glad you captured the mirror bit and the audience on your videos! Great detailed review. I am happy for you that you finally got to see the great man live. Any more concerts in your future because of this experience? They are positively addicting.

Thanks also to everyone for posting your comments, photos and newspaper reviews. They are always much appreciated!

Best regards,
Mary

(P.S. dawnb, congrats on your first post - I enjoyed it!)
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sturgess66
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby sturgess66 » Thu Jul 16, 2009 6:47 am

From ClashMusic.com

http://www.clashmusic.com/news/leonard- ... ow-success
Cohen Liverpool Show Success
Singer receives standing ovation


live Posted by Robin Murray Wed, 15/07/2009

Legendary songwriter Leonard Cohen received several standing ovations last night (July 14th) as he played one of his biggest ever UK shows.

Leonard Cohen is a quite singular songwriting talent. Originally the artist has no musical inclination, publishing several works of poetry in his native Canada. Branching out into novels, the writer became entranced with the emerging American counter culture.

Moving to the United States he soon became involved with the coffee house scene in New York, and took up songwriting. With his deep, breathy voice and poetic lyrics the singer soon became a cult sensation.

Snapped up by Columbia Leonard Cohen released two albums in quick succession, that established him as a powerful songwriting force. Crafting much covered classics such as 'Suzanne' Cohen became the toast of New York's bohemia.

Since then, Leonard Cohen has had his ups and downs. A career decline was halted with several classic albums in the mid 80s such as 'I'm Your Man', before he decided to join a Buddhist temple.

After several years studying as a monk Cohen then re-emerged, to discover that his accountant has embezzled huge amounts of his money. Working hard, Leonard Cohen re-discovered his muse and began writing and performing again.

Announcing a massive date in Liverpool's Echo Arena, Leonard Cohen performed last night (July 14th) to a capacity crowd. Jogging on stage the 74 year old belied his years with a three hour set that saw him trawl through his back catalogue.

Singing his famous track 'Hallelujah' Cohen provoked huge cheers by changing a line in the song to "I didn't come to Liverpool to fool you".

The singer twice introduced his band by giving them such titles as the "prince of precision" for drummer Rafael Gayol and the "maestro of breath" for saxophone player Dino Soldo.

Cohen finished the set by playing 'Closing Time' before returning for a tongue-in-cheek version of 'I Tried To Leave You'.

Leonard Cohen played:

'Dance Me To The End Of Love'
'The Future'
Ain't No Cure For Love'
'Bird On A Wire'
'Everybody Knows'
'In My Secret Life'
'Who By Fire'
'Waiting For The Miracle'
'Anthem'
'Tower Of Song'
'Suzanne'
'Sisters Of Mercy'
'Parisian'
'Boogey Street'
'Hallelujah'
'I'm Your Man'
'Take This Waltz'
'So Long Marianne'
'First We Take Manhattan'
'Famous Blue Raincoat'
If It Be Your Will'
'Closing Time'
'I Tried To Leave You'
Mordy
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby Mordy » Thu Jul 16, 2009 12:40 pm

dawnb wrote: The only disappointment for me was the audience, who seemed subdued, and some around me seemed to think we were in a library - a man further down my row was very aggressive towards the man behind him who was singing along - telling him to shut the f*** up, and the bloke in front of us told us off for being rowdy, although we were only singing along a bit too. But it didn't spoil our night, it was fantastic to see LC in Liverpool, something I'll never forget...
I've been reading the reports of Wetbridge and Liverpool - and Wetbridge sounds amazing - with a very special communication between performers and audience, with Leonard and the band positively encouraging and basking in the response of the audience. I first saw Leonard at the Big Chill last year, and again there was excitement and participation, with the audience singing along when appropriate. It was after this that I discovered this forum, and at that time there was a lot of discussion about whether to sing along or not, and I got the impression that it was very much frowned on :!: Okay, I know the audience have come to hear Leonard, not people in the audience singing, etc etc etc... Therefore when I went to the O2 in November I kept very quiet (might have mouthed the odd word or two), but the whole atmosphere, whilst still absolutely magical, was very much more restrained. So is there some kind of unwritten rule - it's okay to join in a bit if it's an outside gig, but if it's indoors, it's different. Or maybe it's to do with whether the audience is seated or standing?
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby Womanfromaroom » Thu Jul 16, 2009 12:43 pm

sturgess66 wrote:From ClashMusic.com

http://www.clashmusic.com/news/leonard- ... ow-success
Cohen Liverpool Show Success
Singer receives standing ovation


live Posted by Robin Murray Wed, 15/07/2009

[...]

Leonard Cohen played:

'Dance Me To The End Of Love'
'The Future'
Ain't No Cure For Love'
'Bird On A Wire'
'Everybody Knows'
'In My Secret Life'
'Who By Fire'
'Waiting For The Miracle'
'Anthem'
'Tower Of Song'
'Suzanne'
'Sisters Of Mercy'
'Parisian'
'Boogey Street'
'Hallelujah'
'I'm Your Man'
'Take This Waltz'
'So Long Marianne'
'First We Take Manhattan'
'Famous Blue Raincoat'
If It Be Your Will'
'Closing Time'
'I Tried To Leave You'
The "Parisian" on the setlist really had me confused for a moment... :D
Mordy wrote: So is there some kind of unwritten rule - it's okay to join in a bit if it's an outside gig, but if it's indoors, it's different. Or maybe it's to do with whether the audience is seated or standing?
Mordy, it also seems to differ greatly as to which country the concert takes place in. For example, I have got the impression that, to put it mildly, the Irish audiences seem to be much less restrained than the English ones... So it seems to be a question of mentality as well. Which wouldn't surprise me, a mental historian (no pun intended!), at all... ;-)
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby mamcglynn09 » Thu Jul 16, 2009 2:51 pm

Back in Ireland after the fantastic Liverpool concert. Great stadium and spine-chilling performance from the man himself. No marks to Ticketmaster for crap customer service - tickets were on the floor beside the letter-box when we got home. Anyway - drama is all over now - rollon Sunday night in Dublin !!!!!!! :lol:
Thanks to Dave for keeping us Irish lasses company on Monday night, and for organising such an enjoyable meet-up before the concert. :D :D
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2008 - Edinburgh; Cardiff; Manchester.
2009 - Liverpool, July 14th; Dublin July 19,20,21st; Belfast July 26th; Barcelona - Sep 21st
2010 - 31st July & 1st August, Sligo ; 21st September, Marseilles; 10th, 11th December, Las Vegas
2012 - 12th; 14th September, Dublin.
Mordy
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby Mordy » Thu Jul 16, 2009 4:32 pm

Womanfromaroom wrote:So it seems to be a question of mentality as well.
So what about two sorts of concert - taking an example from the film of Mamma Mia - there was the singalong version, and the non-singalong - then you can take your pick :!: :!: :!: :!: :!:
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby ladydi » Thu Jul 16, 2009 5:55 pm

burningviolin wrote: Anyway, so I greatly enjoyed the concert, it was like watching one of those epic movies, you know you’re taking in one of the layers of the plot but you know you need to watch that movie again to get the deeper layers!
Hi burningviolin!

I loved your whole review but this one sentence made me chuckle. The analogy is perfect and that's how so many of us get hooked on Leonard's concerts!

Glad you made it to Liverpool and I know you will find some of those deeper layers in Dublin and Lisbon! :D
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby howthelightgetsin » Thu Jul 16, 2009 9:36 pm

somewhat_nifty wrote:Sorry to hear that Leonard has caught a cold, I expect that was Wetbridge's fault. Sounds like he's being a trouper though - don't wear yourself out Leonard!
I've had a cold since Weybridge concert, not that I'm complaining. Leonard MORE than worth it :)
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burningviolin
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Liverpool, July 14

Postby burningviolin » Thu Jul 16, 2009 11:00 pm

howthelightgetsin wrote:
somewhat_nifty wrote:Sorry to hear that Leonard has caught a cold, I expect that was Wetbridge's fault. Sounds like he's being a trouper though - don't wear yourself out Leonard!
I've had a cold since Weybridge concert, not that I'm complaining. Leonard MORE than worth it :)

A cold after Wetbridge? What did you have after the Big Chill!? :shock: :shock: :D


Thanks Ladydi, looking forward to them!
2009 Liverpool 14/07/09, Dublin 20/07/09, Belfast 26/07/09, Lisbon 30/7/09, Barcelona 21/09/09.
2010 Sligo (x2), Lille 25/09/10 Las Vegas 11/12/2010
2012 Wembley 8/9/12, RHK 11/9/12
O2 London 2013 O2 Dublin 2013
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