I know I’m starting to sound like a broken record but three songs consisting of two songs sung by 3D singing in a mixture of dark and smoke from behind his keyboards in the middle of the stage and a third song (Babel) sung by Martina Topley Bird, who at least was stood at the front of the stage, even if it was mostly with her eyes shut, wasn’t the best use of a three song restriction. (Note: Looking at the setlist I’m thinking we only got two songs – United Snakes and Babel) instead of three, something I mentioned to security at the time but got told that it had been three songs, obviously confused by the very long United Snakes). Songs 2, 3 and 4 would have been a much better choice if it had to be restricted to three songs, with Risingson featuring 3D and Daddy G singing from the front of the stage and Girl I Love You sung by Horace Andy. And it was at this point that they turned the light show on. And what a light show. And what a wasted photo opportunity.
The usual (it certainly feels that way at the moment) photo experience rant out the way, I was expecting to get escorted out of the venue after the two/three songs but this didn’t happen, so I stayed for the whole set; the first time I’d seen the band since I saw them supporting Krafwerk in Rio back in 1998 when they were touring Mezzanine.
Additionally, it was actually the first time I’d seen a ‘normal’ show at The Riverstage (my only other trips being for Soundwave and Kev Carmody: Cannot Buy My Soul) and had always been told that the sound at the venue is terrible. However, it was excellent at Cannot Buy My Soul and is again tonight from both in front of the stage, where I initially watch after leaving the photo pit, and up on the hill where I end up later in the set to get a better overall view of the stage. It makes me think that anyone saying the sound there is rubbish has been ripped off.
It was an excellent show and looked amazing, with the giant LED screens the width of the stage providing a fantastic backdrop. Just a shame about the photo opportunity. Again.
More photos on Flickr.