CONCERT REPORT: Auckland, New Zealand, October 28 & 29,2010

July 25 - December 11, 2010. Concert reports, set lists, photos, media coverage, multimedia links, recollections...
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sturgess66
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Auckland, New Zealand, Oct. 28-29,2010

Postby sturgess66 » Fri Oct 29, 2010 1:45 am

Oops - I posted a review from last year. :lol:
Last edited by sturgess66 on Fri Oct 29, 2010 2:42 am, edited 2 times in total.
mwestern
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Auckland, New Zealand, Oct. 28-29,2010

Postby mwestern » Fri Oct 29, 2010 2:33 am

I thought he did play "Sisters of Mercy". I wasn't there, but according to multiple setlist reports he did. And Leonard certainly wasn't in NZ 15 years ago - unless he was on holiday here having that crazy dream. All the same, great photos.
mwestern
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Auckland, New Zealand, Oct. 28-29,2010

Postby mwestern » Fri Oct 29, 2010 2:35 am

Just noticed that the date on the review shows that this is for last year's Auckland show! I'll stop my monologue now and get back to work.
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sturgess66
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Auckland, New Zealand, Oct. 28-29,2010

Postby sturgess66 » Fri Oct 29, 2010 2:44 am

mwestern wrote:I thought he did play "Sisters of Mercy". I wasn't there, but according to multiple setlist reports he did. And Leonard certainly wasn't in NZ 15 years ago - unless he was on holiday here having that crazy dream. All the same, great photos.
My mistake - apologies - I posted a review from last year - and it has gone poof now - along with all the pretty pictures. :lol: :lol: :lol:
Clementine
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Auckland, New Zealand, Oct. 28-29,2010

Postby Clementine » Fri Oct 29, 2010 4:33 am

The NZ Herald guy is a business reporter I think, and given the incredible, sustained momentum of last night's show some of his comments make little sense. It always seems to me that when people other than regular reviewers are asked to cover these gigs, they feel it's somehow expected they will include some negative comments!

In a sense last night's audience may have been less Leonard's fandom than tonight's - which was sold out within days, leading to the second concert -which came, confusingly, first!

Yet the atmosphere was still electric, the crowd loved him and the music was smooth and seamless, and possibly a little more energetic than last year.

I nearly wept with laughter when Leonard quoted the blog comments asking whether a 76 year old could be sexy, and the three new songs - not noted by either reviewer - were sublime.

Tonight will be fine, fine, and much more than fine. I must go now and start getting ready!
canuck
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Auckland, New Zealand, Oct. 28-29,2010

Postby canuck » Fri Oct 29, 2010 4:48 am

I actually wish Leonard would play "Tonight Will Be Fine". That's a highly under-rated song and ripe for a new interpreation - as Teddy Thompson's stunning version proved.
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Re: Travel Around Australia and New Zealand

Postby dce » Fri Oct 29, 2010 7:52 am

Concert Report: Auckland, October 28

Before sharing my impressions of the first tour of LC's NZ/Aus tour, I should probably say that the last time I saw one of the World Tour shows was about 18 months ago, in Australia. So lots of things that are 'new' to me might have been part of the band's retinue for some time. In preparation for the coming shows, I did manage to listen to a few recordings from some of the later European shows (from I think sometime in September), so I'm slightly aware of what has been performed recently.

Overall, comparing last nights Auckland shows to all of these previous performance, I would have to say that Leonard and the band remain in fine form. Musically, it's clear that the group has continued to refine the more subtle nuances of their performances and arrangements to bring (in some cases) a new and slightly different slant onto the songs that they have now been performing for some time. At last night's show, the whole group seemed to be energised ... I think the general vibe could be summed up by LC's spoken words after Dance Me To The End Of Love: "Thanks for inviting us back to NZ; we don't know when we'll be passing this way again, but I assure you that tonight we'll give you everything we've got."

If I had to pick the single biggest difference I noticed in last night's performance (compared to the 2009 shows), it would be the obvious increase in Leonard's confidence as an on-stage performer. I don't mean to suggest that previously he lacked confidence ... but having seen several shows in 2009, it's clear that he approached his vocal delivery very much by keeping things fairly much the same each performance. It was almost like the songs were a kind a kind of mantra, to be recited as closely as possible each night. In the more recent performances, however, he seems very much more at ease with the material and is willing to experiment with the delivery of a line, or the articulation of a melody, varying it from previous renditions.

The band as well has continued to improve in terms of its integration into a tighter and tighter knit unit. If I had to single out one example of this, it would be Dino's playing -- he has always been excellent, but when watching his performances on the 2009 tour, I had the feeling that the technical genius of his solos was sometimes working a little at odds with the overall vibe of the band's performance (although others doubtless would disagree). Hearing recent performances, and witnessing the show last night, I think his playing at these shows entirely meshes.

Some specific points I noted about the show:
  • Sharon: Sharon was back on deck ... and gave a powerful and flawless performance. So whatever ills plagued her in Europe, she seems fully recovered
  • Everybody Knows: this song seems to be one where LC is at his most playful in varying his performance from previous delivery. Last night he playfully sang some variant lyrics in the chorus, while holding the mic away from his mouth so as to be barely audible. He also sang the outro in a very deep baritone, and when singing about the "cross on top of Calvary" he held his hand up in a little cross shape.
  • Who By Fire: Javier's intro seems to have somewhere along the line grown to become pretty much a complete song in itself ... I have mixed feelings about this but either way it's definitely a fantastic performance
  • Chelsea Hotel #2: In some of the European recordings I heard, the tempo of this song had been reduced to the point where it was almost a funereal recitation by LC. Last night's rendition was closer to the previous tempo, and I think the better for it.
  • Waiting For The Miracle: I guess it changed quite a while ago, but it was still a novelty to hear the drums on this track played mostly by a drum machine (with hi-hats ably added live by Rafael)
  • The Three New Songs: I think the inclusion of the new songs definitely adds new life to the set. Some I like more than others, but after having heard several versions of each it's obvious that each is incrementally gaining a character of its own.
  • Anthem: In the intro to this song, LC referred to the "wisdom and sanity of your government" when talking about how rare it was to gather like this when the world is filled with conflict. "It is indeed a priveleged place."
  • Tower of Song: As on the previous "down under" tour, LC joked about his keyboard, saying that "this things's pretty sophisticated .. you probably haven't seen anything like this down here."
  • Avalanche: There was a lyric substitution (compared to the original version) -- I never knew how much I wanted you / O love beyond belief
  • The Eigenharp: After recent discussion on the board, I was keeping an eye out for this nifty device. Dino only seemed to play it on two songs, one of which was Chelsea Hotel he used it to play some violin type strings. When he's playing it, that thing lights up like a Xmas tree!
  • The Partisan: I can't really put my finger on why, but the performance of this song last night seemed 'punchier' than other times I heard it. Maybe a bit of a rearrangement?
  • Hallelujah: There was the obligatory namecheck -- last night it was "I didn't come to Auckland to fool ya"
  • I'm Your Man: "if you want to try another kind of love, I'll wear an old man's mask for you"
  • A Thousand Kisses Deep: Before reciting the poem, LC spoke briefly about having recently read a blog on the topic "can a man of 76 be sexy". He said he particularly liked one comment which said "yes, but in a repulsive way". During the poem, towards the end, there were some different stanzas (compared to what I've previously heard) ... they started "Well that's my story, I admit it's broken and it's bleak".
  • If It Be Your Will: During LC's spoken recitation at the beginning, just after he said "I will speak no more" a kiwi woman from the audience loudly yelled out "NEVER!"
  • Take This Waltz: As with some of the European performances, LC replaced "I want you, I want you, I want you" with "Te Caro, Te Caro, Te Caro" which he sang to Javier
  • Closing Time: After the last verse, LC gave a longish spoken outro with words I hadn't previously heard. The basic gist was that he's like to drink with us the whole night through, but they're wiping down the bar and all the drunks are getting into their cars ... I never got to tell you how beautiful you are. Or something like that.
Back for to Vector Arena for the second show in an hour or two!


Dean (from Adelaide)
(For most of November 2010, I followed Leonard and the band as they toured around Australia and New Zealand. You can read about my wanderings on the blog I created to collect them all in one place: http://lcdownunder2010.wordpress.com/)
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bridger15
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Re: Travel Around Australia and New Zealand

Postby bridger15 » Fri Oct 29, 2010 8:46 am

Thank you, Dean (from Adelaide) for your comprehensive report and thank you Cathy (from Adelaide) for your fabulous photos.

We are indeed lucky to have you two reporting on and capturing your "travel around Australia and New Zealand".
I look forward to seeing more beautiful photos and reading more outstanding reports.

Well Done!

---Arlene
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: Auckland, New Zealand, Oct. 28-29,2010

Postby neo » Fri Oct 29, 2010 9:00 am

Image
Second show soundcheck in session.

* Vector Arena - Auckland, New Zealand
What sad religions they want us to believe.
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neo
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Auckland, New Zealand, Oct. 28-29,2010

Postby neo » Fri Oct 29, 2010 10:41 am

Image
Once again it’s on.

* Vector Arena - Auckland, New Zealand


Image
Forget easing into night two, LC has hit ground full steam and shows no signs of letting off the gas.

This is going to be a fun night.

* Vector Arena - Auckland, New Zealand
What sad religions they want us to believe.
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sturgess66
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Auckland, New Zealand, Oct. 28-29,2010

Postby sturgess66 » Fri Oct 29, 2010 12:19 pm

Image
There’s a crack in everything, and LC is cracking the crowd up tonight with the band introductions.
* Vector Arena - Auckland, New Zealand
Image
Still on 11 tonight. Second set is live in Auckland.
* Vector Arena - Auckland, New Zealand
mwestern
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Auckland, New Zealand, Oct. 28-29,2010

Postby mwestern » Fri Oct 29, 2010 2:59 pm

Yes - it was perfect. To my eyes and ears anyway. And the BIG surprise - when did Leonard last play Night Comes On? The answer is now Auckland, October 29, 2010. A completely solo version - no backing vocals, and I couldn't see any others playing - they just stood around on stage watching Leonard. 12000 jaws dropped. Many other highlights, but when did he last play that?

He didn't play Avalanche, so I guess that was replaced by Night Comes On. I think it went over time too, because they didn't come back for I Tried To Leave You or Ain't No Cure For Love. I assume that was the plan anyway, but it finished with Closing Time. Such a great night. Thanks for including us Leonard.
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Auckland, New Zealand, Oct. 28-29,2010

Postby mwestern » Fri Oct 29, 2010 3:02 pm

I think the answer to my question is 1985 - happy to be corrected. Cheers, Maurice
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Auckland, New Zealand, Oct. 28-29,2010

Postby dce » Fri Oct 29, 2010 3:06 pm

Just got back from the second Vector Arena show (Auckland) ... another incredible show in front of a crowd that was a fair bit more enthusiastic than last night's audience.

I'll write a proper report later (in the thread I've created to collect all my travel musings) ... but the two big things:

1. Avalanche was subbed out of the set list ... to be replaced by a performance of Night Comes On, solo by LC! Am I correct in assuming this is the first airing of this song on any of the world tour shows? It was a great, stripped back acoustic rendition of the song ... hope it becomes a regular fixture.

2. Despite being a very energetic and engaged audience, I think the crowd tonight missed out on an encore because of the haste with which many, many people vacated their seats and started filing out after Closing time had finished. The house lights stayed down for a while after the band left the stage and some of the Front of House staff seemed to be getting ready for another set while also looking out over the sea of departing people. I guess a decision got made and the lights came up ... and it was all done. I'm not sure why so many people were so eager to leave .... maybe everyone had to get back to their babysitters before midnight. Either way, this lead to this show being 2 songs (and about 15 minutes shorter), with no I Tried To Leave You.

For full set list ... see the sticky Setlist thread


Dean (from Adelaide)
(For most of November 2010, I followed Leonard and the band as they toured around Australia and New Zealand. You can read about my wanderings on the blog I created to collect them all in one place: http://lcdownunder2010.wordpress.com/)
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sturgess66
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Auckland, New Zealand, Oct. 28-29,2010

Postby sturgess66 » Fri Oct 29, 2010 3:17 pm

Thanks dce. I think there was a report of Leonard rehearsing "Night Comes On" at the sound check in Warsaw, Poland - a long rehearsal and I believe I remember that band members joined in. It would be great if someone captured the Auckland performance on video. I hope, I hope ... :D

Also - what is the other thread where you will be doing your concert report? A link? Thanks.

People rushing out at the end ... :roll:

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