The Much-Anticipated Performance: A Big Sound Festival 2013 Review
Written by Anisa Menur Maulani
Exactly a year ago, my friend Cinita and I were sitting on the floor of my living room, watching the No Distance Left To Run DVD on a lazy Sunday. Look at all those happy faces, we said. They got to see the Blur gentlemen live, standing only a few meters away from them. When are we going to have the chance to do that?
Funnily enough, the answer came in February 2013, when entertainment and MICE giant Dyandra Entertinment and music promoter Sound Rhythm announced that Blur will headline the Big Sound Festival 2013 on May 15th 2013 in Jakarta, Indonesia.
Days seem to be fleeting, as we got closer to the night when our dream comes true. We have applied for a leave at work, and find ourselves unable to concentrate at anything. Then it finally happened. Twitter exploded with the news that the gentlemen had arrived, and there were photos swarming around of Damon smoking at the airport, Graham and Dave talking to their fans, and Alex doing a door-stop interview with the press.
May 15th finally arrived and we were finally queuing in line in front of Lapangan D Senayan, where the concert will be held. Noted that Blur was not the only one performing at the event; their show was preceded by Van-She, Tegan and Sara, and The Temper Trap.
I could not speak much of Van-She’s performance, as I am not into their kind of music and thus was not interested in seeing them. But was Tegan and Sara and The Temper Trap were great; their songs were enjoyable, and the audiences seemed to be having a good time listening to them. These are the bands that are worthy of opening up an act as legendary as Blur, and the emotions that they built reached its peak just when the main show is about to begin.
My, how my hands shook and my stomach turned when they darkened the lights on stage and played Theme For Retro.
Then people began to scream “They were on the right side of the stage!”, and shadows moved onto the stage. Last thing we know, people were pushing themselves into front of the stage, and Girls and Boys was heard, closely followed by Popscene.
The atmosphere was crazy. Everyone was screaming; even guys in their twenties screamed like junior high school girls. We were dancing and jumping madly, and smartphones are all up in the air, because no one would want to miss anything.
The situation calmed down a bit with Out of Time, only to then explode again as Damon jumped down from the stage during Country House. He ran up along the fence, greeting the maddening fans. He ended up perched on one corner as audiences grabbed his hands, trying to get a touch of the charismatic frontman (Someone was lucky enough to have his/her hat being taken by him). He also managed to shower us with water whenever he got close to the audience.
The encore started with their new single Under The Westway, which was my personal favourite that night. The encore was filled with mid-tempo songs like For Tomorrow and The Universal, and some people felt that show was much too short. Adding one or two more songs perhaps will be appropriate.
There were also complaints on the sound system, as there is a moment when Graham seemed to be struggling with his guitar. At some point during Parklife I was not able to hear any sound of the guitar; but thankfully it was only a minor glitch that did not hamper the whole show.
The Blur gentlemen did not talk much. Damon greeted us a couple of times, but there were not many things that he said. However, I find that “Tonight, you inspired me” was the most touching thing he said during the night. It feels great if he was able to feel our excitement for having waited to see them for up to 20 years.
The show ended with the much-anticipated Song 2, which I believe was the soundtrack of everyone who lived through the 1990s. We jumped, we head-banged, we scream, we cried. The guys left the stage but we knew that we would keep this moment in our heart for as long as we lived.
It is wonderful to finally being given the chance to see Blur performing in your home country, and I congratulate Chile for being the latest addition in their tour!
Anisa Menur Maulani