Tuesday, November 4th, 2003
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This story was translated from Russian by Olga Shehovtsova and Julia Krisanova
I have never believed that the band “ is living their last concerts”. I never fall to thinking about the band’s future, only their present and everything they did in the past is important for me. The concert in Saint Petersburg on October, 31 not only didn’t disappoint me, but I had such a great pleasure, I spent so much energy that has never happened to me during any other concerts in my life. I am asked: “ Which concert did you like more: present show in Saint Petersburg or the Oslo one of 2002? ” If speaking about the intensity of emotions, it was the yesterday’s one of course, but not only because it is still fresh in my mind. That concert which my eyes have seen and my ears have heard exceeded all my expectations ( it is necessary to say thank you to the organizers who changed the arrangement of the spectators’ audience in proper time and place ). I managed to see and to hear the band both from the sitting places in the middle of the hall and from 1meter distance from the artists. In fact the whole concert has been an entire bustle. But let me tell you the story step by step.
We came a little bit earlier and successfully carried away a camera (so, soon at your disposal the whole film with a-ha’s faces! If everything turned out well of course ). However all the places near the partition separating the VIP zone from the dance floor were occupied and we stood up at the second row. It was far enough I must say. The hall was filling up slowly, the VIP zone was extremely empty, and it was almost 7 p.m. – the beginning of the concert. After a half an hour when just a few very important persons appeared something incredible started! The border was opened and the crowd got off with a jerk to the cherished and mysterious VIP zone. We got into the 11th row ( there were 16 of them) just in the middle so that Morten’s mike was opposite me. The view was splendid and I couldn’t have dreamed of such a luck but I also didn’t have to content my mind only with this. With the first chords of “ Forever Not Yours ” people got off with a jerk to the scene as if they have received a command and we followed them, though it was a pity to leave our places. But I forgot about it soon, because when I looked up I saw Morten in all his non-fectitious beauty!! My God, girls from Ukraine were right: alive he looks like Mister Perfect, pictures and clips can’t show his charm in full measure. It seemed Morten was surprised at our energy and smiled to everyone with his unique smile. In the first song he forgot the words and we amicably endowed him with laughter and exclamations. But he, as he usually does in such cases, smiled broadly and everybody forgave him his usual inadvertence.
Then the guards appeared and started to fight us back to the sitting places, the near scene dance floor wasn’t provided. I must say that though the guards were strict they were polite. We got into the 16th row and had to listen to some songs from there sitting under the guards’ superintendence what didn’t make us glad and upset me and the others a little.
The culmination of the concert became the moment when Morten went out the scene, and Paul and Magne sang “Sycamore Leaves ” and “ Dragonfly ”. It is said that just when the band asked the borders were opened again, and the crowd run to the scene for the second time and no one disturbed us until the end of the concert.
It brought some happiness that all the people were joining in the songs and sometimes they sang louder than Morten. Actually, the sound was good but it was going to the depth of the hall, and soon I got accustomed to such a deaf sound ( It seems that’s the way Morten can’t hear himself without earphones on the scene ;)). Sometimes guys around me sang louder than a-ha. But this didn’t upset me. To the contrary I was pleasantly surprised. The age of the people varied from 20 to 40 and each of them was singing!
When I turned around I was shocked by the hall which was full to overflowing! I missed the moment when it filled up. Well, this time I wasn’t ashamed of the hall and the audience. A-ha was taken warmly, the audience got worked up with the first chords, no incidents happened, except the moment of “dispersal of people demonstrating their love to a-ha” J. There were only two songs an encores and that distressed a little. I wasn’t writing down the play list though I was trying because it was dark and I had no time. And I also remembered what Gusar said: there is no need of doing it because play list is the same during the whole tour. I guess he was right.
Except his blunder in the first song Morten didn’t commit any slips. It concerns both lyrics and his voice. He was warmed up to singing splendidly. I assure you that I have never heard such a tremendous and perfect vocal as this time. A-ha are in good form. Paul was at his best despite the severe suit, Magne was charming, talkative and handsome as usual. I was surprised by performing of “The Blood That Moves The Body ”. In fact I didn’t like it very much, I wanted to yell: “ Push the tempo! ” J. The album version impressed me more. They said that “Lifelines” would sound “slightly different” and that actually has happened. Originally, easily, freshly.
Everything else was performed in usual way but it wasn’t bad though and even quite the contrary. We sang, we ignited, we (I hope) caused joy to a-ha with our energy and musical talent J. We had to join in singing “ Hunting High And Low ” from the rows of the VIP zone and I must confess that it turned out a bit weakly because we were sitting very separately and because we WERE SITTING. I heard only myself for example. They said : “ It looks like only girls are singing. ”.It was funny. But what a good time we had with “ The Living Daylights! ”.O-oh, it was gorgeously, we didn’t let Morten to sing a word! J
So you say that a-ha has already played their best? That they “came down” to concerts in the provinces? That they support with all their forces their bygone popularity? It’s a great pity haven’t visited this concert. The band is alive, it is integral, harmonious, topical till now, very talented. They are beloved, expected and people are grateful for the minutes of happiness they bring. I felt happy at this concert. And I was convinced once more that my choice is right and eternal.
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