Short version: A-mazing!
To elaborate: Of the four musicians who went on stage around 9:00 PM, only two were with the band when they released their last album, ten years ago. Of the original founding nucleus, only singer Gavin Rossdale is left. The other two apparently couldn’t be bothered to go on tour, again. With some band reunions or comebacks, esp. when there is essentially only one person left, you get to wonder why do it? You ask yourself, who needs that, anyway? Imagine Billy Corgan get some new musicians and call the band Smashing Pumpkins … oh wait, bad example, that’s what he’s doing. Imagine Dave Grohl change the Foo Fighters’ name to Nirvana. Ridiculous? Definitely no need. With Bush, however, after hearing the new material and having been to this concert, the only thing I keep asking myself is: Why did he wait so long?
I, for one, didn’t miss a thing. The new Bush sounded like the old Bush, and yet at the same time current and alive. Of course, some say, it’s always sounded like Bush when Gavin Rossdale went on stage, even solo. I’m not sure, I totally agree. Partially, yes, but I distinctly remember hearing Rossdale say, in an interview around the release of his album Wanderlust, that that album sounded different because he’d grown fed-up with noisy guitars. And I kept thinking: Right, what a shame. With a couple of loud guitars, Wanderlust could have been not just a decent but a really cool album. Well, there’s no mistaking he’s discovered his taste for guitars, again.
The songs they played were a pretty good mix, covering new stuff (such as Sounds of Winter, All Of My Life) as well as all the important milestones of the band’s history. The concert started furiously with the Sixteen Stone song Machinehead and everybody knew where this night was going. I didn’t have time nor leisure to write down the whole set-list, but I remember hearing the following songs, too: Everything Zen, Glycerin, Alien, Swallowed, Cold Contagious, The Chemicals Between Us. There seem to have been some issues with the band equipment, which upset Rossdale a little, but I cannot say I noticed anything detrimental.
When the band stopped playing after somewhat more than an hour, I was the slightest bit disappointed I hadn’t heard Comedown, but then there was the encore. To see and hear Bush come back on stage and perform Pink Floyd’s Breathe and the Beatles’ Come Together both in very special ways was charming, hilarious and altogether awesome. They added a few more songs and concluded the concert with the song I’d been waiting for performed with just as much energy as the opening track and letting me leave the concert drenched to bone in sweat and deeply satisfied.
While queuing two hours before the band started to play, I was already thinking how great it was that a 90s-band that hadn’t released an album in ten years, could still draw such a crowd. After the concert, I was surprised and delighted to see how many of those people could also sing along. All in all a night to remember and worth every single Euro.