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Rockhal Esch-Sur-Alzette 2012
Date: 29th February 2012
Location: Rockhal Esch-Sur-Alzette (Luxembourg)
Capacity: 6500 places but I don't think they sold out
Support Act: Periphery
Place: Second row, right infront of guitarist John Petrucci <3
Rating: 100/5 for the band and 2,5/5 for the venue & the support act

 

Pictures: posted on Facebook

Videos: Here embed on this blog (uploaded with youtube)


♫ Getting there
After a long time of consideration I decided to go to that show on my own. I wanted to see them so badly since they are somehow my 2nd favorite band and I have never seen them live. Unfortunately I don't have any progressive Metal Worshippers as friend so of course noone wanted to join me. So this was my first concert where I knew noone and.... no joke, talked to nearly no one as well. But this was because I can't speak french or luxembourgish....

♫ The people
I already complained about the french people when I was in Paris and it's the same for Rockhal now. I don't know why but I found them so annoying. Maybe it's just their language but I think their behaviour is also very vain. I can't describe this feeling I just think I'll never get along with them in my life.

Well but the guys from Luxembourg were really cool I think. Why I said 'Guys'? Because for every 15 guys there was maybe one girl at the show. And most of them were just there because of their boyfriends and they don't really seem to like the music at all.
So you can guess that when I came to the venue without a boyfriend they stared at me like I'm an Alien XD

And I've seen Jesus.Not only once.
Maybe you've heard of my weakness for long haired guys and this place was crowded with them. Soooooo many cute Metal-guys it was my personal Mekka XD

♫ Getting through 'security'-checks

I don't get the point why the venue forbids every kind of camera. The big sign over the entrance titles the 'no camera' thing with "For your own security" lolwut?
So you an imagine that filming and taking pictures during the concert wasn't that easy (and I failed in the end when my camera was taken away XD).
But getting the camera in was incredibly easy:

I gave my ticket to that guy but he had trouble to scan it so he had to call for help and so on... anyways when I was finished there I went to the security guy with my bag opened.

Me: Do you want to look inside my bag?
Security: *taking a short look into the bag*.... Do you have a camera?
Me: No o:-)
Security: Go on then.
Me: Okay byeee : ) *hardly trying not to start laughing*

LOLWUT?? How stupid is that ?XDD
Who would answer "Yes I got a camera although I've read the sign over the entrance"?
Of course I had a camera. I was hiding it in a trouser pocket veiled by my sweater which I bond around my hips.
Maybe I was just lucky because the women with the permission to touch me were busy but still....lol ?XD

I got a place in the 2nd row behind two cool guys. At first I was disappointed that it was only 2nd row (1st was mainly occupied by the Meet&Greet people) but later on when I saw how security was stopping everyone from making pictures and videos I was happy again. I was able to hide the camera behind the back from the guy infront of me - he was standing between me and the eyes of the Security guy :D

♫ Periphery
I can't help myself but I didn't enjoy their performance so much. They are playing "Math Metal" which sounded kinda interessting but wasn't at all. From what I've heard before the show I found their music okay. So I hoped that seeing them live would change sth. in my understanding of 'Math Metal' Maybe I'd hear mathematical equations when I'd transcribe their music? Unfortunately not.
On my side of the stage we got the Bass player and one from 3 (!!!) guitarists. These two were so strange. Both of them trying to make an evil-Metalhead-face while playing their instruments, their legs wide apart like they are doing the splits. It was just so 'fake' I don't know how to describe it better.
Let me go on with the singer. I think he thought he was sexy but.... Nooooooo you got it wrong dude. He was making movements like a women doing pole-dancing, moving his hips like...... you get the idea. His singing, although he was screaming at his best like he's lead singer of a screamo band was barely audible. Either a technical difficulty or the thankworthy try of his band members to keep things to a more sufferable level.

On the other side of the stage the other 2 guitarists were playing. I liked these two. Their playing was nice and they played more 'naturally'. Especially the one with longer hair really got a stage presence and it was nice to watch him play. At the end of their show I was lucky enough to get one of his picks. And what a beautiful pick it is.
Oh and btw they also got a drummer reminding me of a ruffion, having a bald head wearing a cap. But I can't comment on him since I wasn't paying attention to his playing.

All my negative critics don't implicate that I will never listen to their music again. When listening to their records before there were indeed some parts I found pretty interesting. And their music is just way too complex to give up on them after a few listens. So of course one day they'll get another chance. And maybe then I'll understand why a band needs 3 guitarists

♫ Dream Theater
"Dream Theater is an American progressive metal band formed in 1985.....The band is well known for the technical proficiency of its instrumentalists, who have won many awards from music instruction magazines"Wikipedia

What shall I say? There are no words. Dream Theater's music is the most perfect thing have ever heard in my life. So my expectation was to see these Virtuosi, these mind-blowing masters of their craft, these fireworks of inspiration and talent. I just couldn't believe that they could demonstrate this perfection live on stage. But they did.

Already their Intro was mindblowing. They used 'Dream is Collapsing' from the Inception movie and showed a story with cartoon characters on the screens. To be more concrete these characters were the band members. For examble the keyboard and piano player Jordan Rudess is also known as "The Wizard". The cartoon wizard was showing him. In the end of the clip the members entered a plane with the Dream Theater logo on the side rudder and it took off over the cloud cover. Just like on the album artwork from 'Dramatic Turn of Events' (the record they're touring with)the rudder was the only thing visable over the cover and there was the One-Cycle-driving-clown balancing on a rope which was about to break high over the clouds. Here you can see the artwork and Here the video from the Intro I recorded

Well then the plane landed and the members jumped out of it following a sign saying "STAGE ->" and then we could see the shadows of the cartoon band enterinng the stage with their instruments and the crowd EXPLODED. We were already mental when the characters of the members on the screen appeard, when they entered the plane and so on but when "Bridges in The Sky" started playing and the OneCycle-Man was balancing on desert cliffs while the Shaman opened the song....You definately have to watch my video this Intro was so thrilling I think I've never seen such a good Intro.

And then HE entered the stage right infront of me.

Only a shadow like the cartoon at first.

But undoubtly HIM.

The most manly looking metalhead-guys screaming "I LOVE YOU JOHHHNN!!!!!!!"

I already felt like unrolling my prayer-rug although he didn't even touch his guitar.

The best guitarist in the whole universe.

JOHN PETRUCCI

I'm sorry but he is just my favorite guitarist and well...seeing him live was a whole new experience for me. Seeing him united with his guitar lost in the music was sth that made him "sexy" in a way I never though he could become. I truly understand all these guys now. When playing with his guitar he became a God. And his eyes. So so so sooooo beautiful. They were dark brown nearly black and they were shimmering as if a 6 year old boy was playing this show and not a 44year old man with an amount of muscles I usually define as turn-off.

I don't think I have to comment on his thrilling skills you'll understand if you decide to listen to their stuff one day or watch my videos wathever.
But there was one ability I never thought I'd observe during that show. Petrucci got the same talent as Mr. Wolstenholme.... he sees you even when you're standing in the last row.
Several times I felt like we've got direct eye-contact and several times he was definately looking at our group of people while playing a riff and then making an awesome face and well.... ah I just can't believe he played guitar while looking at us... it's just.... ah you won't understand it anyway I'm weird XD

Now a bit more concrete about the show itself:
The other band members namely John Myung on Bass, Jordan Rudess on Keyboard, Mike Mangini on drums and vocalist James LaBrie were outstanding as well. The Instrumentalists are among the best musicians of this generation with their instruments.
And LaBrie had some vocal-moments which caused me meter-wide goose-skin reminding me somehow of Lucifer himself coming down on earth singing an opera XD Of course you might argue that his voice is a bit weird at times and not perfect live. But the emotion he put into it makes the question of right or wrong notes a moot one. Impressive how he impressed me xD

Myung is undoubtly an awesome and shy bassist. His fragile stature and long and thin hair is often the cause of comparisons with japanese girls. So the sound he's teasing out of his instrument is even more surprising. Unfortunately too many first-row-guys were in my way to observe him more closely but he was great without question.
Rudess is really a "Wizard". His piano playing passages on the records so often motivated me to sit down infront of a piano and his keyboard stuff makes the music so much more spherical.
So of course he "charmed" me live as well. I especially remember one ocassion when his keyboard was declining at one side while he was playing it. This was SO amazing to watch. Reminded me of the marching band on uhm... was it the Titanic? Anyway I got this picture of a sinking ship with a playing orchestra stuck in my head xD
So sad that he was on the wrong side of the stage. As a piano player myself it wouldhave been so inspiring to have him "on my side".
Unfortunately I don't have a proper picture of Mangini playing drums.... they were just so massive that I could barely see him behind them. Check out my videos or gallery to get an idea.
Mangini joined the band in 2011 as replacement for Portnoy their founding drummer. I'm really sad that I could never see Portnoy play but what I can say for Mangini is that he's a stunning drummer as well. He played an over 5 minute long drum Solo which was just so cool. He somehow behaves like a Sunshine, always grinning and nawwww ^^

It was so awesome to watch this show surronded by other Dream Theater Fans. You know sometimes I find it depressing that I don't have contact to fans of bands like Dream Theater or also Bands like In Fear And Faith and so on to talk to them. So these people were just so nawwwww although their french was a turn-off. But they were singing along to the lyrics. Shaking their heads, clapping the rythms and so on they knew and loved the music as well as I did. When these two guys infront of me started to heavily Headbang during The Root of All Evil my heart melted xD

Talking of the Root Song.... this was btw one of my Highlights. There were 3 points on the setlist with 2 Songs they could have played. At this point the Alternates were 'The Root of All Evil' and 'The Dark Eternal Night'. I was so much begging for the 1st and they did play it and I was in heaven ♥
Take all of me
The desires
that keep burning deep inside

So awesome to chant these lyrics with the whole crowd ♥

I could copy-paste all their awesome lyrics now because I was just enjoying every moment of singing along but no....

Also remarkable is the Acoustic session consisting of 'The Silent Man' and 'Beneath The Surface'. The Alternates to these two songs would have been 'Wait for Sleep' and 'Far from Heaven'. I totally was hoping for the Silent Man but I'd prefered Far from... over Beneath The Surface although both of them are just amazing. But I got a more personal connection to Far from heaven.

Anyways it was SO awesome ♥♥

I don't want to go into details but after the acoustic part a few more highlights came.

And then my camera was taken away by the security guy XD

That dick came over to me while I tried to record "War Inside My Head" and "The Test That Stumped Them All" in a row because it's just the order from that amazing record they're from. Ahhhhhhh >.<
So I also could not film the Awesome Rudess-Petrucci Intro-Solo to 'The Spirit Carries on', nor could I film their "greatest Hit" 'Pull Me Under' and take a picture of their Group-bow at the end of the gig.
But I won't complain cuz the Security guy didn't deleted all my material I had so far and even before the band left the stage he gave my camera back to me with a smile and it's ok I think.

♫ My shirt and getting home

After their mind-blowing gig I really HAD to buy a shirt. As you can already imagine it was tricky to get a shirt that suits me since they only sell mens wear. But I finally found a shirt and fell in love with it:

The lyrics written on the shirt are from a >20minute long song called 'Octavarium' and say:

♥♥♥
I never wanted to become someone like him so secure
Content to live each day just like the last
I was sure I knew that
This was not for me
And I wanted so much more
Far beyond what I could see
So I swore that I'd
Never be someone like him

So many years have passed
Since I proclaimed
My independence
My mission
My aim
And my vision
So secure
Content to live each day like it's my last
It's wonderful to know
That I could be
Something more than what I dreamed
Far beyond what I could see
Still I swear that I'm
Missing out this time
♥♥♥

I'm in love with this shirt it's so comfortable, awesome design and it's black of course :D

So to get this to an end.... I don't regret anything. I only regret that I haven't seen Dream Theater earlier when they played Loreley last year. They played 'The Count of Tuscany' on that day.... my absolute favorite.

But I swear I won't miss their shows again.

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