I totally agree with Phil on "Mama"; I was one of those who said he could never pull it off properly but he nailed it at MSG. The new key is great and works perfectly with the hellish crimson lighting. I like it much better than the 2007 version.
Yea, I always hear "Ripples..." in the "far away, away"'s on "Fading Lights." I also wonder if they were calling back to "Supper's Ready" with the title; the jam also reminds me of "Firth of Fifth" in some spots.
At this point, the only thing I'd still change in the set is the acoustic "Lamb" in favor of "Lover's Leap." It still bums me that "Supper's Ready" is not popping up in any form for the final tour. Other than that, everything is flowing very well and clicking.
I'm glad "That's All" was finally brought back, that one went over big at the Garden and got everyone up and clapping.
One song I'm surprised never made it to the set was "In Too Deep" - for one of their most (over)played singles from their biggest album, it feels weird that it was only ever performed on one tour. I do know it almost replaced "Ripples..." in the States back in 2007.
Still on a high from last night. Amazing, epic show.
My father surprised me with tickets a week ago for my birthday, then about an hour before we got in my brother who works hospitality at the Garden got us major seat upgrades. Fantastic view of the whole stage and a great crowd around us.
The show itself was fantastic. Phil exceeded expectations and was in great shape. His voice sounded good and his humor and spirit were intact. Nic is an absolute beast of a drummer and I can only imagine how good he will be 20 years from now. Tony and Mike were as reliable as ever and Daryl was in fine form. The backing vocals were unobtrusive and added depth and texture to many songs, in particular "Afterglow."
I'm so glad I wound up getting "Duchess," was really worried "Misunderstanding" would come back again. The visuals were absolutely stunning throughout, particularly "Mama," "Home by the Sea," and "Domino." I loved the acoustic set, particularly "Follow You, Follow Me."
All in all, a perfect evening. I was exhausted as hell at work today having only slept 4 hours, but it was worth it. I love this band and they are going out in style.
I'll be at the Garden Sunday. What time do they hit the stage?
An IEM / aud mix of the show is being posted about.
I listened to a very good recording of the second Chicago show throughout work today, and I have to say it's like night and day compared to first few shows.
The band sounds very tight and punchy, with Nic especially on his A Game. Tempos, transitions, changes are all ironed out and sound much more deliberate and focused.
Phil is in far better shape vocally; he actually sustained notes and put some power behind his delivery, particularly "Afterglow," the runs on "Misunderstanding," and "I Can't Dance." The backing vocalists didn't seem to be covering so much as embellishing the sound. I did miss "Duchess" (though it appears to have returned to the set), but "Misunderstanding" was a great version. His enunciation seems to have improved as well.
I'm surprised they went through with it; in 2007 didn't Tony discussing dropping "Ripples..." for "In Too Deep," which of course they didn't go through with.
And if anything needs to replace "Lamb" in the acoustic set, it's gotta be "Lover's Leap." I'm really upset they're not representing "SR" at all for the last tour. "Entangled" could've gone there as well, would've worked well with the backing vocalists.
My ideal swaps:
"Behind the Lines" for "Abacab"
The whole medley for "Misunderstanding," "In Too Deep," and "Squonk."
"Lamb" for "Lover's Leap."
And put back "Duchess."
"Misunderstanding" does sound great, I'll admit. Phil sounds stronger than at the start of the tour.
I'm gonna get throttled for this, but drop the medley. "Fading Lights" is a great song but it's anemic slog this tour, especially without the mid-song jam. Drop the whole medley, "Lamb," and "Behind the Lines," then put in "Abacab," "Misunderstanding," and something like "In Too Deep" (by far their biggest hit that isn't being played in terms of still being played regularly on most radio outlets). "Duchess" isn't going anywhere, I don't think, as I think Tony especially recognizes as the show's emotional high point. It's the story of the band.
My first thought, perhaps selfishly, was "I hope it's not Phil." The man's been through enough and the fact that he's diabetic makes me even more worried.
Given Phil's voice, the full "Supper's Ready" would have been a nightmare to rearrange and transpose and probably would've not sounded right. Phil singing "Apocalypse" three tones down with no power in his voice is something I can live without.
I'm going to have to go with the Encore / Three Sides Live tour. At that point, the three man lineup had grown into such a tight, supremely confident lineup and had such a varied selection of quality material at their fingertips. That tour kind of felt like a farewell to the early days in retrospect, with the last ever full "Supper's Ready," the last full "Lamb," "It," and "Watcher" all in the set. And to conclude with the Marquee Gig followed by Six of the Best, the whole tour felt like a celebration of the band'd history up to that point.
Second for me would be the Mama tour; you can he already sense the band was transitioning into the sleek pop juggernaut of the IT / WCD era, but there's a lot to love about this tour. The musicianship was terrific as always, and Phil was firmly in his vocal peak and never sounded as good live again. The revolving door of old medleys added some variety to the set, "In the Cage" was never done better, and there was generally just a real excitement and energy this tour that felt very natural. By contrast, IT felt like Springsteen during the BITUSA era, particularly the 1987 half: still very entertaining and fun but it felt like they were playing the role of pop stars as opposed to their more authentically honed previous stage presence. I actually think We Can't Dance was a better tour.
Listened to three complete concerts now. The only bit I am unsure works is the new working of The Lamb. I know some like it, and I assume the band does, but I could dispense with it. From what both Tony and Nic say, I assume they tried adding the closing section of The Musical Box onto it but decided that didn't work.
The idea that something will be dropped in favour of Abacab seems likely for the upcoming US shows. I can't see them simply adding another 6-9 minutes to the show. That would seem unfair to the British audiences. Abacab was a major hit single here.
I wonder if it might take the place of TIOA? Does that get played stateside? It was not a significant hit there.
"TIOA" may not have charted high, like # 58 or something, but it's still played often on rock radio and has been on every U.S. tour since its inception. It's one of their most rousing, well received and energetic rock tracks. I don't see it getting dropped at all. I stand by my projection that if "Abacab" replaces anything, it's "Behind the Lines."
I have a very strong feeling that they are going to change the setlist slightly for the US leg. Given their talk about having Abacab 'in the wings', rehearsed and with a light production and everything to go with it, plus the fact that - as another poster pointed out and I can totally corroborate - it is still heard fairly regularly on the radio here. I think they will drop something for Abacab. For that reason, to the best of my ability, I'm actually going to avoid spoilers once the stateside leg commences. Fingers crossed 😃
"Abacab" was on at the grocery store the other day, which made me think of this.
As for something getting dropped, the only song I'd wanna see go is the cocktail lounge version of "Lamb." Be a shame if they lost "Duchess," which is the emotional high point of the show to my ears. They could also use it as the opener and drop "Behind the Lines," which opened the 2007 tour anyway. Then drop "Lamb" and put "Lover's Leap" in the acoustic section.
Speaking of jarring, the transition from "Fading Lights" to "Cinema Show" sounds super abrupt and out of nowhere to near me.
"Feeding the Fire," an absolutely badass song with a monster Phil vocal. Should've made the album.
"Hearts on Fire" may be my pick for Genesis's worst song. That song is absolute trash.
Agreed that Phil's nasality is the main drawback to his current voice...it's like he has a kazoo in his throat. He's also missing and blowing lyrics more often than usual on some songs. Does Phil stand on any songs? I know he'd get up for "In the Air Tonight" in his solo shows, and that was routinely the best sung song of the NDY shows. I believe sitting down while singing constricts your diaphragm or something, which probably makes it all the more difficult for him.
That said, I have "Mama" from Manchester on now and I'm not hating it. The passion in his delivery is still as palpable as ever, and this is coming from someone who regards the original as one of the best vocal performances in all of music (and he arguably eclipsed it live in 1983-84). Overall, I'm enjoying the show and will probably go in December at MSG.
The big highlights of this tour for me so far are "Fading Lights," the acoustic "Follow You, Follow Me" (I'm in love with this version), and "Duchess" which is powerful and poignant as Phil has basically become the character he's singing about. "Carpet Crawlers" also sounds great.
This would've been my hyper-unrealistic ideal reunion set:
1. Dance On A Volcano
2. Behind The Lines
4. Land Of Confusion
5. Medley: The Knife / Watcher Of The Skies / The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway / Ripples / Firth Of Fifth / I Know What I Like / Dodo~Lurker
7. That's All
8. In Too Deep
9. Home By The Sea / Second Home By The Sea
10. Follow You, Follow Me
11. No Reply At All
15. No Son Of Mine
16. Throwing It All Away
17. Dancing With The Moonlight Knight (intro) / Carpet Crawlers
18. Medley: In The Cage / The Cinema Show / In That Quiet Earth / Counting Out Time / Supper's Ready
19. Hold on My Heart
21. Los Endos
22. I Can't Dance
23. Tonight, Tonight, Tonight / Invisible Touch
24. Fading Lights
25. Turn It On Again
Neil Diamond sang in the original key all the way to the end. Paul Stanley of KISS tries.
Of note - one thing I can't hear a lot on Phil's voice is effects. The vocal effects that are used today by artists are sick - above anything we could have ever imagined. A lot more than classic reverb, echo, etc.
Mick Jagger, with some exceptions ("Paint It Black") still handles just about every song in their original key, and his falsetto is very strong even at 78. Paul Stanley is in worse shape vocally than Phil is, in my opinion. Phil at least knows his limitations.