(I’m echoing this from my deviantart page, because I’m lazy and I promised the roundup to people there)
Here’s the set list from Sunday night:
Beginning of the end
March of the pigs
Me, I’m Not
The Great Destroyer
The Good Soldier
No, You Don’t
The Day the Whole World Went Away
The Hand That Feeds
Head Like a Hole
Here’s some YouTubes:
The Great Destroyer
Talking and TDTWWWA
The Good Soldier
I was about three metres to the right and a metre or two in front of the guy taking most of those videos.
Here’s my review:
Hardcore NIN fans should look at the set list above and immediately realise how motherfucking awesome the show was last night. For everyone else, I’ll go through the night.
After fluffing ourselves up (or down in my case, I didn’t want to ruin any of the new stuff I had bought in Sydney, so I wjust threw on a black t-shirt and some scabby pants and I was set), we fumbled our way around Sydney’s bus system and managed to find one that took us to the Hordern Pavilion, where the gig was being held. Upon arriving at the Pavilion, we followed the trickle of other black t-shirted individuals to the entrance. After responding to a call out of “DECEPTICONS FOREVER!” (my black t-shirt just so happened to have the Autobots symbol on it) with a quick history of how awesome Optimus Prime is, we joined a queue. We found out about ten minutes later that this wasn’t, in fact, the queue that we needed to go into, since it was an exclusive queue for the NIN fan club members. In hindsight, I probably should have realised this, the people more confident and cheerful than in the normal queue.
So we joined the proper queue. Then, five minutes later (oh how I hate queues), we joined the real proper queue that we needed to in order for Louise to have her bag checked and stored. Another half-an-hour of waiting and huzzah! The rollerdoors shuddered open and the crowd was met by the bulk of a dozen or so security guards, behind which was a very bitchy (and when I say ‘bitchy’, I mean bitchy in the way that signifies that if you were to meet her in a place outside her work, she’d probably be one of the nicest individuals you’d ever be likely to talk to) woman who started insisting that the crowd form one orderly line. It’s difficult to describe the way that the lot that we were standing in was laid out, or, to be more precise, how it wasn’t, but let me tell you that asking that crowd to form one orderly line was resulted in the kind of military, adherent, well-mannered response you might expect asking a gang of skin heads to host the next annual policeman’s ball. Fortunately we were in our own special real proper queue and managed to sidestep most of that nonsense and get in slightly later, but no less fundamentally in than everyone else. Unfortunately, our tickets were taken and thrown into a small Bin Of No Return, and thus when I am around six months older, I will have completely forgotten I’ve seen NIN. Ah well.
There must be some sort of gap between the fervour levels in Perth and Sydney when a famous band comes to town, because everyone was incredibly nonchalant to getting in the door and getting a good spot in the front centre of the venue. Lou and I ordered a couple of vodka Red Bulls, sipped at them, went to the toilet, and still managed to get about ten metres away from the monolithic, phallic microphone stand that would later be prefaced by a sweaty-faced Trent. We waited around, listening to the bizarrely disco-pop collection of songs that played before the support act came out. The support was a band I hadn’t heard of before seeing them on the ticket — ‘White Rose Movement’ — and they played a lot better than I thought, having based my expectations on their name. Louise wants the keyboardist’s haircut (it’s okay, it was a girl).
Half an hour of waiting around for the set to be changed and then…wham. There they were, striding onto the stage, dressed in grey uniform, confident, calm, ready to rock the fuck out of the place. And rock they did. Louise had to leave the pit because she wasn’t really wearing the right shoes for the occasion, but she later said she had an excellent vantage from a few more people back. I was between 5 and 10 people back, front and centre, for the whole gig and, even though I emerged at the end completely soaked in sweat and smelling like a combination of armpit and pot ash, I still had the most fun at a concert I’ve ever had.
The actual stage set-up was impressive as hell. They have this awesome display that they use for some pretty great special effects that you can see in a couple of the YouTube videos linked above. Smoke was flying everywhere, allowing for some cool moments of the band emerging from the fog, absolutely slamming a section of a song. For the most part the crowd was as a crowd normally is, 80% full of people that want to be there and just experience the music, 20% full of dickheads who have come to be dickheads in pursuing their crown of king dickhead of dickheadsville. A lot of people on the forums that I’ve browsed thought that the crowd was really off-putting. I didn’t find it that bad, but then I’ve been in a Slipknot mosh pit at the Big Day Out, so I might have higher thresholds of irritation when it comes to these things.
Highlights for me were definitely Starfuckers, Inc. and The Frail/Wretched. The Great Destroyer was incredible, as was Closer and Trent doing his solo Hurt thing was pretty great too.
Overall, it’d have to rank up there as one of the best musical experiences I’ve had. Very inspiring, very intense. Can’t wait for them to come back, I just hope they deem Perth worthy to stop by at so I don’t have to spend a shit load of money to travel to Sydney or Melbourne again.
Robert Jordan passed away on the 16th. Though I ended up trailing off the Wheel of Time series at book ten, I still enjoyed the series while I was reading it, and I’m sad at his death.
I’m slowly but surely succeeding in the cutting (or at the very least clamping) of my internet umbilical cord. I’m much more focussed towards getting some real writing done in the next few weeks, along with kicking my arse into higher gear at university. I bought a whole heap of cheap (but good) comics over in Sydney and I’ve been studying them in order to get a feel for how certain frame transitions go. I’m building a book of good transitions and analysis of how they work in a 300 page visual diary that I hope to fill by the end of the year. I’m also looking around Perth trying to find a decent place to buy a drafting board so I can set that up at my Mum’s place when I head back there at the end of the year. Yeah, I’m kind of trying to get serious about things. Call it maturing, call it a change of direction, call it indigestion, but I really want to make some changes in my life. Hopefully they’ll be the right ones. We’ll see, I guess.
Also, I missed a Kevin J. Anderson signing at my bookstore (i.e. I missed meeting and chatting with Kevin J. Anderson, modern sci-fi legend) by about an hour, due to flying in just that little bit too late from Sydney. Fuck.
That’s all really. I’ll start updating regularly again now that I’m back in Perth.