Montag, 15. Mai 2017

Depeche Mode in Antwerp or " Happy Birthday, Mr.Gahan!" / 09.05.2017

It was so hard to stand up the next morning, because it was very early. But I have to work at the afternoon, so we caught a train to Cologne.
Arrived in Cologne only one hour left to prepare for the work day. My travel mate Thomas rested at my home, he made a home office day. 
In the evening I was happy to enjoy a great dinner with my kids and Thomas.
Next day normal work day. Then I picked Thomas up and we met a friend, which drove by car to Antwerp and took us with him. We arrived in time at the Sportpaleis in Antwerp, where I saw Depeche Mode a several times. We bought a beer and I took a pic of the stage trucks. Only six stage trucks.... no wonder... the stage is so small. I find this really ok, all this cost, I like it small and ecologically friendly, you can make a great show without this crazy technical grandiloquence. But there's one problem this time, the band save the money for a bigger stage though they hiked the ticket prices. Take a look on the prices in Latin- and Southamerica. Unbelievable. More than 150$ for a front of the stage ticket. How can it be ?

How you see, this time we had seats, no standing. We were far away from the stage but with a good view head-on to the stage. At the beginning we sat like all the others.
Depeche Mode went out, same procedure meanwhile.... we were coming in a tour mode, like the band themselves. A good start with the two new songs. The audience was in a good mood, I think because it was the birthday of Mr. David Gahan. 55 years, wow! He looks still great. He is a little bit skinny, but in a good shape.
After the band ended with the first 2 songs and Mr. Gahan welcomed the audience with " Good evening Antwerp", the audience tried to sing " Happy Birthday"!

Maybe a radio station spreaded a kind of plastic light sticks in orange and blue to all the fans. As ordered at the kit the fans shaked it after the second song and started now with the Birthday song, but the band started with the next song " Barrel of the gun".
That was strange, really strange. 

Ok, but now the sticks were packed out and all people in the arena shaked them the whole time. They glowed in the darkness and it looked wonderful. Most of the people at the seating area stood now. Very good atmosphere. 
The lightshow worked much better from far away, now you discover a lot, you can't see, if you stand very close. And the sound was very good in this distance. We were really surprised.

No setlist changing, "Barrel of the gun", " Pain, that I'm used t", "Corrupt".
I don't like "Corrupt", to heavy, to deep for the one-third of a concert.
" In your room" with the dance screening. This time Thomas and I enjoyed it more, because we had the evening before the crazy idea, that we both will reset the screenings. We looked at every move of the pair in the video, because in a few weeks we have to dance together like them....not really, because they are professional dancers but we will give our best.
After "World in my eyes" came " Cover me".
I like this song more and more, it's such a quiet song but it work unbelievable good as a live song.
Dave came out on the catwalk and got a huge applause, the birthday child.

In Dave's break I needed a break myself for buying beer and looking for the lavatory rooms, because before the concert there were to many people had the same wish.....meanwhile Martin L. Gore performed " Home" and " Question of lust".
I was back in the arena with Dave and now the band, speciallyMartin L. Gore and Peter Gordeno sang finally " Happy Birthday" to Dave with all the fans together. It was a very touching moment. I can't remember as I was ever on a Dave Gahan Birthday gig before. Several time at Martin Gore's birthday, but Dave ? I have to look on
If you don't know that, I'm touring with Depeche Mode since 1982 and saw really many concerts.

Here you can see how far away we were from the stage and now you see, how less you can see the band. Some screenings are great, but they divert the view from the band. The band looks like Lego characters. 
But despite this, it was a good concert. In my opinion the band isn't still in the mood of past tours, but there is an development in the right way.

"Poison heart, where is the revolution, Wrong": all good songs but topped by " Everything counts". 
All the people sang: " the grabbing hands grab all they can, everything counts in larger amounts"!
Hope you all will see it at least on time on this tour. 
" Stripped" was better than the first 2 concerts, maybe because the sound in the arena is very good and I heard some minimalist differences to older live versions and I liked it really.
I'm didn't manage it to watch the screening of " Enjoy the silence".
I noticed that the audience got first very excited as they recognize the song, but it didn't gain momentum. But " Never let me down again" rocked the arena. A jubilation went through the arena and Dave did a very good show.... you all know his moves here until the great and all time best moment when he comes on the catwalk and waves his arms.

Here are my last pictures of this show, Martin sang a soft " Somebody" and Dave came back to perform " Heroes". I wasn't still ready for this. That's the unbelievable luxury of my situation. I have planned to visit many concerts of the Global Spirit Tour, so I can do it in my speed. And this time I do it slow. I walked out to drink a beer. Cheers Mr. Ziggy Stardust!

I was back to "Walking in my Shoes" and " I feel you".

And finally " Personal Jesus".
After the Amsterdam show I came to a decision. Maybe the band is now a little bit to old for a fast and furious show as in past times, but me not. And so I did my " Personal Jesus" performance like I always did.  And it worked very well. The people besides me were in the beginning a little bit irritated because my wild dancing and singing, but then they let themselves infect and sang and hop with me.
We ran out of the arena while the fans shouted at the encore and applauded frenetically, because we had an appointment with Manuel, our driver. 
It took a while to get from the car park and nearly 3 hours later we were back in Cologne.
Totally tired but happy. 
First concert of three which made me happy and so I slept very well.

Thank you all the fans at Antwerp for the great show!
Thank you Manuel for driving us safely back and forth!

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