Monday, 25 March 2013

Something in the night.

Springsteen brought the Wrecking Ball 2013 tour to my adopted hometown of Melbourne tonight in the first of 3 shows at Rod Laver Arena, an easy-as-pie 10 minute train ride from Balaclava. I was in GA again, roughly the same spot as Wednesday night's show in Sydney. Too many motherf*cking signs. Rambunctious crowd who took well to Springsteen's continually evolving 'Your ass is gonna tell you to get up' spiel, this one involving a rarefied pronunciation of 'ass' and another reviving 'Pay Me My Money Down'. Overall an upbeat setlist for an opening night. Clocked in at just under 3 hours. My wife had a great seat and I watched her throughout the night, no more than when Bruce and the Band launched into a raucous 'Born in the USA'. Aradhna's an Aussie, and any Aussie under 40 grew up hearing BITUSA on the radio. I loved hearing 'Something in the Night', 'The River' and 'Land of Hope and Dreams', but would be super happy to not hear 'Hungry Heart' ever again.
'Out in the Street' an odd choice for an opener, but it gave Bruce a chance to connect with the crowd from the middle of the Rod Laver Arena's floor.
'Well now you're born with nothin', and better off that way ....'
'Bring on your wrecking ball ...'

Unrelenting guitar assault of an evening, with Springsteen leading the 6-string charge.
I'll miss this ritual when Springsteen has left these shores.
Bruce's tongue in cheek boast of traveling over 'shark-infested waters' first spawned a reasonably spontaneous audience call-out. Now it's got people bringing inflatable sharks to the show. 

No, Springsteen isn't nodding off. He's digging Jake's riff before laying at the stage's lip and having his back rubbed by one of GA's many regulars.
'High Hopes' has achieved real prominence during this Aussie tour, and not just because it features the first E Street Band member to repeatedly attack his guitar with his teeth.
Another reason to be sick of the signs: Twice Bruce invited audience applause to determine which of two songs on signs would be played. First, there was a choice between 'The River' and 'Meeting Across the River'. Second was a choice between 'Prove It All Night' with an extended intro and 'Incident of 57th Street'. Both times the songs I'd have preferred to hear were losers. Of course it's worthy consolation to hear any one of those songs, but the elimination of two particularly rare and in my opinion unique Springsteen songs was disappointing.
'Then I got Mary pregnant, and man that was all she wrote ...'
Again, it's ridiculous to complain about a '78 era version of 'Prove It' with ample Springsteen facial contortions. But to have 'Incident' in our grasp, only to see it VOTED DOWN ... yeah, that's f*cked.
One of the payoffs to being in GA is when the horn section joins Bruce at the lip of the stage, seen here during 'Pay Me My Money Down'.
A gaggle of girls were invited to dance onstage during 'Pay Me'. They wore matching t-shirts. From here on in they'll be insufferable whenever someone broaches the topic of Bruce Springsteen.
I don't pretend to know what it means, but Tom Morello's Black Spartacus guitar further proves he's the epitome of revolutionary chic.
'Darlington County' led to another saunter around the arena floor.
The thump and swagger of 'Shackled and Drawn' gets stronger each night.
Beauty and the Boss.
Seriously, can anyone pull a face better than Springsteen?
'Can't see nothing but these chains that bind me.'
'Wherever someone's struggling to be free .....'
'Badlands' Bosstime.
'This train carries whores and gamblers ...'
My wife shows her fist-pumping appreciation for a little chestnut called 'Born in the USA'.
Jake owning 'Born to Run'.
Bruce atop the Professor's piano never gets old.
Still yellin' and carrying on at the end of another 'spectacular'. How does the man do it?

1 comment:

Paul O'Dell said...

Joe ,

met you in the outside queue last night - and I have looked up your blog this morning - like the photos - and cant wait till go again Tuesday - all the best, Paul