Monday, February 23, 2009

Oasis, Palaverde Treviso, 21/02/2009

You have to love those two rascals of rock`n`roll, Liam and Noel Gallagher and their band Oasis: They certainly know how to pack `em in and how to put on a great show! After their sold-show in 2005 in the very same venue in Treviso, home to the mighty (and very rich) Benetton family, the band from Manchester (die-hard City and NOT United fans by the way, as they always like to point out) again filled Treviso`s Palaverde arena with some 5,000 fans. Oasis management this time was pretty picky with photographers (according to my contact they eliminated 12 of us) but thanks to this darling contact of mine at a local concert promotion company, I got to go for free as part of the “press” (a nice saving of 45 euros!).

What with all the new technology vis-a-vis cell phones, it`s viturally impossible to prevent anyone from taking pictures at concerts any more, so I managed to get a shot or two with my Nikon D-60.

It`s quite an honor actually to see the two brothers up on the same stage as they`ve been known in the past to go off into separate directions on their international tour dates (such as once when Liam remained at home while Noel went off to the States with the rest of the band). Quite amazing also to see Noel on stage and not in any apparent way traumatized by the adoring fans below his feet: some may recall that on September 7, 2008 during a show in Toronto 47 year-old David Sullivan jumped up on stage, attacked Noel from behind and threw him below onto the speakers! Sullivan was also ready to pounce on brother Liam until the roadies managed to subdue the crazy fan.

Their quasi two-hour show included one of my all-time favorite Oasis songs, “Lyla”. They also sang a favorite of fans worldwide, “Wonderwall” and one of their best-loved hits of all time, “Champagne Supernova”. No Zak Starkey (Ringo`s son) on drums this time as for the 2005 show (great treat for me back then!). His place this time on the drum skins was taken up by Chris Sharrock , Robbie Williams`s former drummer, and regular band members Andy Bell on bass and Gem Archer on guitar, two very cool dudes, to say the least. George Harrison`s “clone” was again, as in 2005, on keyboards (I`m wondering, given their great admiration for the Fab Four, if they`ve dressed this guy up exactly like Harrison on purpose, so similar is he to the real version). They also sang a whopping six songs from “Dig Out Your Soul”, their latest album followed by up to four encores.

As folks may (or not) know, both Liam and Noel are great fans of The Beatles (I believe Liam`s son is named Lennon in honor of John), and even though Liam is one cocky son-of-a-bitch (to this day he STILL believes that Oasis is the “greatest band in the world”. Hard to blame him as they`ve so far sold 65 million records around the world), I personally love the boys for that simple reason, and I was CERTAINLY satisfied as their last encore was none other than “I Am the Walrus” from the Beatles` Magical Mystery Tour album (I also have the video of that movie and the clip for the Walrus song certainly does creep up in a lot of Oasis songs)! All pics by M. Rimati.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Gianluca Grignani, Teatro Giovanni da Udine, 16\02\09

A 90 minute concert with just one ancore for this 37 year-old singer from Milan. As a youngester he was influenced by The Beatles and by The Police. Grignani has appeared four times at the famous San Remo Festival which takes place every year in February. Grignani was supported in Udine by a five-member back-up band during his Udine concert. Given the singer`s rather good looks, there were more women than men present at the concert! The songs weren`t bad, even though many sounded the same as all the others. At one point, he began talking about politics which is always somewhat of a problem in Italy as there`s no way out of the situation, dead or alive. His past has also included some encounters with cocaine plus a suspended driver`s license for excessive alcohol use. Grignani has also been the target of Italian satirical shows and recently verbally attacked a fan from the stage. The concert was ok, but not one of the best that I`ve ever seen (all pics by M. Rimati).

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Some of the rather interesting churches in Italy and around the world.