CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

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CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby lmc on Fri Aug 21, 2009 4:13 pm

Hi everyone,

It was in my opinion a odd concert, very "business like" maybe it was the heat, it was a very very hot day in Nimes or the audience, but I did feel Leonard Cohen and the band were not having as much fun as usual.
Leonard's voice was not that good for the first few songs but improved a lot during the show.
Two curiosities no curtain on stage with the "Unified Heart" symbol so they played in a huge bare stage and last part of "Closing Time" ("We're drinking and we dancing but there's nothing really happening, etc") forgotten, either on purpose or not I do not know.
Leonard Cohen was not very talkative, just kept playing and singing, and finished with the usually thanks to everyone on the crew and the "Il y a longtemps que je t'aime......".
A final word on the audience which I found not as good and participative as in Lisbon or Colmar, which are for me the two best shows I've seen so far.
Cheers
Luis
2008: Lyon / Lisbon / Nice / Vienna x2 / Paris x 3
2009: Nantes / Paris / Lisbon / Colmar / Nimes / Barcelona
2010: Gent x 3 / Lisboa / Strasbourg / Tours / Lille
2012: Ghent 12th, 14th, 15th / Paris x 3 / Madrid / Lisboa
2013: Paris / Bruxelles / Rotterdam / Amsterdam
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby joyezekiel on Fri Aug 21, 2009 4:47 pm

Interesting comments...... particularly as I was thinking about going to Nimes myself.

This scares me a little. Every concert I've been to over the past year has surpassed the previous - for me, Austin was technically perfect and Weybridge was the most fun. I've been looking at the US Fall tour schedule and trying to decide whether to go to any concerts..... my work schedule is making it a little difficult to take the time off anyway (not to mention the dwindling finances!) and I just couldn't bear to be even the slightest bit disappointed. I'm almost beginning to think that I'd rather preserve the wonderful memories I have of the fantastic concerts I've been lucky enough to attend so far.

Of course I'll probably change my mind, but I'm just wondering if anyone else is feeling as I do?
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby sturgess66 on Fri Aug 21, 2009 5:04 pm

From "ibshore" on YouTube -

("So Long Marianne" - partial)

"Leonard Cohen at the Arenes de Niimes - some of first encore"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9km7xBe-8H4

A warm, wonderful evening - Leonard Cohen and his most excellent musicians at the old Roman Amphitheater in Nimes, France August 20, 2009.
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby Lilialily on Fri Aug 21, 2009 7:32 pm

Hi everyone!

My first post to share my videos from yesterday in Nîmes. Hope you'll enjoy them. You'll find the first one at :
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5XshEfOhlA
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby bluebell on Fri Aug 21, 2009 7:46 pm

Great videos, nice to see Leonard in daylight.
but I'm amazed by all the empty seats at the start and the bare looking stage. I thought at first it was a sound check!
Dublin 1988, 2008,2009, Belfast 2009, Bratislava 2009, Gent 2010, Dublin 2012
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby bluebell on Fri Aug 21, 2009 7:51 pm

joyezekiel wrote:Interesting comments...... particularly as I was thinking about going to Nimes myself.

This scares me a little. Every concert I've been to over the past year has surpassed the previous - for me, Austin was technically perfect and Weybridge was the most fun. I've been looking at the US Fall tour schedule and trying to decide whether to go to any concerts..... my work schedule is making it a little difficult to take the time off anyway (not to mention the dwindling finances!) and I just couldn't bear to be even the slightest bit disappointed. I'm almost beginning to think that I'd rather preserve the wonderful memories I have of the fantastic concerts I've been lucky enough to attend so far.

Of course I'll probably change my mind, but I'm just wondering if anyone else is feeling as I do?


I think I know how you feel. My best concert ever with Leonard was in 2008 in Dublin. I think it was the surprise of just how good he still was and the depth of emotion he evoked in me. It was at the beginning of his world tour so I hadn't read many reports.
I've seen him 3 times this year in Dublin and Belfast, all wonderful concerts too.
I thought the last concert in Belfast would be my last time seeing him but now I'm going to Bratislava next week. In a way it worries me that it may not be as good as the others, he's been touring a long time now, the weather is very hot, it must take its toll.
But I think I'll be positive, go and enjoy the show and hope for the best.
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby Mabeanie1 on Fri Aug 21, 2009 8:05 pm

lmc wrote:Hi everyone,

It was in my opinion a odd concert, very "business like" maybe it was the heat, it was a very very hot day in Nimes or the audience, but I did feel Leonard Cohen and the band were not having as much fun as usual. Leonard's voice was not that good for the first few songs but improved a lot during the show.

Luis


I didn't get this impression at all. I thought Nimes was a great show. OK, it sounds as if there was a very different atmosphere at Colmar which was more of a festival sort of thing but I thought everyone was pretty relaxed and happy and Leonard talked as much as, if not more, than he has done at most of the other recent shows I've been to. The show did start late due to the time taken by the unbelievably over-zealous and unnecessary security checks so that would explain the empty seats at the start and the need to keep the pace up but I don't think it was any more than that. I was right at the front and I saw plenty of big smiles throughout the show. Did Leonard miss out part of Closing Time? I didn't notice. But he frequently fluffs (or misses out, or changes - it all depends on your point of view) words, cues and goodness knows what. It's all part of the charm.

In case anyone thinks that Luis's description of the stage seems a bit odd, there was no unified hearts backdrop because Les Arenes itself was the backdrop to the show. That is one of the things that made this show different. Actually, what struck me about the venue was how relatively small and intimate it seemed to be despite the grandeur of the setting in a Roman amphitheatre.

Joyezekial - it's only natural with any show - whether musical, theatrical or whatever - that there will be some nights that stand out more than others. Both audience and performers have their favourites and one person's favourite will be different from another's. Don't let Luis's comments put you off. He's entitled to his view but personally I don't agree with it and I would definitely cite Nimes as one of the highlights of my own personal LC tour so I don't think you would have been disappointed if you'd gone. I'm not the only one will positive memories either. There were a fair few other very happy concert goers on my flight back to the UK this afternoon.

But ultimately our conflicting views of one particular show are irrelevant: if you feel you need another fix: go to the States (where there's a will, there's a way and you can pay the bills off next year!) and catch another show. If you are content to live off your memories of the great shows you've already seen, well that's an equally valid and good thing.

Can't write any more now (I only just got home 30 minutes ago) but will come back later unless someone else fills the details in in the meantime.

Wendy
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby bridger15 on Fri Aug 21, 2009 8:28 pm

Lilialily wrote:Hi everyone!

My first post to share my videos from yesterday in Nîmes. Hope you'll enjoy them. You'll find the first one at :
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5XshEfOhlA

I really enjoyed your video. Great first establishing shot. It is a great record in the context of the concert venue. No adornments. I enjoyed seeing the misting machine full blast keeping the troupe cool, the technicians and roadies taking their own photos. the pro photographers that are allowed to the front only for the first song and Dino wearing his runners (1.05).

Thanks for posting this. It is fantastique!
2009-San Diego|Los Ang|Nashville|St Louis|Kansas City|LVegas|San Jose
2010-Gothenburg|Berlin|Ghentx2|Oaklandx2|Portland|LVegasx2
2012-Austinx2|Denver|Los Ang|Seattle|Portland

Arlene's Leonard Cohen Scrapbook http://onboogiestreet.blogspot.com
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby lmc on Fri Aug 21, 2009 8:36 pm

didn't get this impression at all. I thought Nimes was a great show. OK, it sounds as if there was a very different atmosphere at Colmar which was more of a festival sort of thing but I thought everyone was pretty relaxed and happy and Leonard talked as much as, if not more, than he has done at most of the other recent shows I've been to. The show did start late due to the time taken by the unbelievably over-zealous and unnecessary security checks so that would explain the empty seats at the start and the need to keep the pace up but I don't think it was any more than that. I was right at the front and I saw plenty of big smiles throughout the show. Did Leonard miss out part of Closing Time? I didn't notice. But he frequently fluffs (or misses out, or changes - it all depends on your point of view) words, cues and goodness knows what. It's all part of the charm.


Hi Wendy,
I agree with you missing from a song is part of the charm:) . Yes security is tight but if people arrived earlier they would be in their seats on time...I saw people come in 30mns after the show started!!!!!! I will always have trouble understanding that.....anyway, Leonard did not talk as much as the recent shows I have seen, it is always a great show but this one just felt more "automatic". The Arenes is a great venue it just felt weird seing them in such a huge stage but yes the backdrop was beautiful.
Cheers
Luis
2008: Lyon / Lisbon / Nice / Vienna x2 / Paris x 3
2009: Nantes / Paris / Lisbon / Colmar / Nimes / Barcelona
2010: Gent x 3 / Lisboa / Strasbourg / Tours / Lille
2012: Ghent 12th, 14th, 15th / Paris x 3 / Madrid / Lisboa
2013: Paris / Bruxelles / Rotterdam / Amsterdam
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby joyezekiel on Fri Aug 21, 2009 8:48 pm

Ok - thanks for your comments everyone and I'm feeling a bit better now! With hindsight I suppose my comments could seem somewhat selfish, but I guess I'm also worried that Leonard is doing too much and that one day I shall read that he's collapsed from exhaustion.

I'm secretly hoping for some "one-offs" in the future!
1976 Leicester 2008 London O2/Cardiff 2009 NYC/Austin/Weybridge/Nashville 2010 Ghent x 2/Las Vegas x 2 2012 Ghent x 2/Austin/Montreal/Quebec City/Boston x 2 2013 Memphis/New Orleans/Winnipeg/Birmingham/London O2/Amsterdam/Auckland
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby sturgess66 on Fri Aug 21, 2009 9:21 pm

Thanks for the video liialily - good one - and interesting to see everything in daylight. We are used to seeing video with a backdrop and all the lightening on stage.

Got any more? Haha. À la mode de Roscoe Beck - "pleeeeeeeeassse?" I notice that Dino smoothly assures possession of his hat at around 0:21. :lol:

It is really strange that people would wander in late, 30 minutes after the show has started. It would take and "Act of God" for that to happen with me. :lol:

Every show is always different and I'm sure this one was wonderful in it's own way. And singers change up words and lengths of songs all the time. There is a website by a devoted Patsy Cline fan who has made it her life's work to document every variation in every performance that Patsy did. And Patsy was notorious apparently for changing up words and verses.

ibshore's video clip above of "So Long Marianne" was taken after it was dark and depicts great warmth and happiness coming from the audience.

Wish I had been there!
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby Lilialily on Fri Aug 21, 2009 11:14 pm

The video of "Everybody knows" is now uploaded, I have a few more videos that will be available as soon as my internet connection stops being a pain.
Thank you for your comments. The videos tend to be shaky at times thanks to the gentleman sitting next to me. :roll:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4UjrrDYWhOU

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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby Kenadian on Sat Aug 22, 2009 12:40 am

mabeanie wrote: didn't get this impression at all. I thought Nimes was a great show.

lmc wrote: Leonard did not talk as much as the recent shows I have seen, it is always a great show but this one just felt more "automatic".


I have seen quite a few shows (which does not make me any kind of an expert) and this one probably ranks as one of my least favourite. That doesn't mean it was a bad show, it's still a great experience. And I will definitely be seeing more shows! I was maybe a little preoccupied since there were no rooms available in Nimes, and the show starting late. I've slept in train stations before and it isn't a pleasant experience. At least my luggage/computer was safe (thanks Liesbeth)) and after all that, I did make the overnight train to Strasbourg so I at least had a bed.

But the venue was awesome and I met up with some great people who helped make it happen for me!

Cheers,
Ken (off to Vienna in the morning if I wake up in time, and thinking, "Hmmm...not too far from Weisen!")
2008: Kitchener|Hamilton x2|Toronto x3|Montreal x2|2009: New York|Detroit|New York x2|Hamilton|Kingston|Ottawa x2 |Colmar|Vienne|Nimes|Philadelphia|New York MSG)|Cleveland|Nashville|2010: Sligo x2|Lisbon |Caen|Grenoble|Strasbourg|Marseille|Tours|Lille|Victoria|Vancouver|Oakland x2|Vegas x2|and more.
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby Mabeanie1 on Sat Aug 22, 2009 12:44 am

sturgess66 wrote:It is really strange that people would wander in late, 30 minutes after the show has started. It would take and "Act of God" for that to happen with me. :lol:


I really can't begin to describe just how slow the lines at the entrance were due to the rigorous searches - no perfunctary process this, all bags were checked rigorously, contents taken out, cameras removed from their cases for inspection etc etc and bodies thoroughly patted down. I have never seen anything like it for a Leonard Cohen show. I joined the line around 7.15-7.20 pm and didn't get in to the venue until after 7.45 pm. At that rate, anyone who arrived at the venue after 7.30 pm would miss the start of the show. In addition, they had a stupid system on the floor where you were not allowed to go to your own seat. You had to wait for a hostess to show you to your seat. One of them had to stay by the entrance at all times to stop anyone trying to break the system so the next person could only be taken to their seats when another welcome person came back to base. I knew where my seat was pretty well so in all innocence I started to head in that direction. I was called back and told in no uncertain terms that I was NOT allowed to go to my seat unaccompanied. And, yes, they even put me to the back of the line for my bad behaviour. Fortunately, it didn't spoil the show for me but I can see how people could easily have missed the start.

W
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Nimes, August 20

Postby Kenadian on Sat Aug 22, 2009 12:56 am

Mabeanie1 wrote:I really can't begin to describe just how slow the lines at the entrance were due to the rigorous searches - no perfunctary process this, all bags were checked rigorously, contents taken out, cameras removed from their cases for inspection etc etc and bodies thoroughly patted down.


It was painful. But they did speed it up eventually by telling men without bags to go to the front, and I was not frisked. I even showed hoim my water bottle with cap and he nodded OK. They even let me in with my 'professional' camera. Of course I didn't use it since anyone who did was promptly busted and escorted to the consigné.

I always think it is ridiculous that an SLR camera (which I would never use the flash) is not allowed, but other cameras flashing all the time is OK. I guess it has nothing to do with the annoyance factor, they just don't want any high quality shots floating around.

Cheers,
Ken(adian)
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