Confession87 I thought it was surreal when Chicago was all quiet and people was dancing and bouncing balloons everywhere. >>>>Absolutely brilliant gig, loved the insight into the songs, process and Royal. I can understand why people would have loved more Illinoise, I mean I would have loved to see him on that tour just as much as I loved to hear his new songs. It feels quite backward now to hear his previous work live now after a two hour set of pretty much all new songs though.
There was a strange moment at last night's Festival Hall gig where the balloons were released during Chicago. I grabbed one, thinking that everyone else would as a sort of souvenir of the evening. But then seeing all these balloons bouncing around above people's heads, I decided to relinquish mine and throw it back into the crowd. It was just a much a part of the experience as the music, all contained in that room.
Awesome gig - not sure where @Confessions87 was sitting, but where I was (fourth row stalls), there was complete rapt attention to the performance. You could have heard a pin drop during The Owl and The Tanager!
Probably the best gig I've been to - loved the new stuff, and Sufjan's mini-lecture on Royal Robertson in the middle of it, and great to have a mini-reprise of Illinoise at the end. Left completely uplifted!
This was probably the best gig I've been to of the past year, he was so on form and I wanted Chicago to go on forever. The audience were terrible around me. I've never seen so many people get up and use the toilet or buy drinks. Can people not sit for two hours and focus on something? Such short attention spans.
This gig was incredible. The guy really knows how to deliver. I agree about the talking and contextualising the new album, I know a few people didn't really 'get' the new direction. And ultimately, he's gonna play mostly new material because that's what he touring and he's said that he's much more interested in playing this than the more folk-style music. I also have to say, the visuals were stunning.
How long was the gig? What time did it finish roughly? I've got tickets for tomorrow night and am just trying to work out travel arrangements for afterwards. Any help would be much appreciated. I can't wait!
Sorely disappointed? The show kicked ass! Sufjan knows how to put on a show. I get the feeling that he sees himself as much an entertainer as a musician, and he seemed genuinely excited by his own new material. He talked a lot between songs and I really dug that because he gave a lot of context, explaining how the album was made and what kinds of things he had on his mind and what he was going through at the time. He played three Illinois songs for the encore, which ended up seeming more like fan service than anything else. I'd rather him play all new material that he's still happy to be playing than old shit just because that's what most people will recognize.
I'm glad it was the new stuff. Sufjan has moved on, it's what makes him great. I love both old and new material.
I'm glad it was theatrical, which I think his old shows we're too? maybe less obviously?
And it was a massive set, maybe down on paper it looks like a normal setlist, but a load of his new material is like 5-10 minutes long.
i hate to say it (judging by the reaction on twitter) but was anyone sorely disappointed by this? it was more like going to a musical than it was a gig, fair enough you have new material....but a setlist composed of 95% new stuff? LAME!