It is with a disappointed recollection that I begin to write this review. As much as I would rather not dwell on the behaviour of the audience members around me, I feel I have to mention it as it had a big impact on my experience of the show as a whole. Being sat directly behind a group of men who may as well have been at the pub with a Pink Floyd CD on in the background was very trying. If they weren’t continuously talking, they were up and down to the bar every two minutes and the constant disturbance of the entire row became very tiresome. When you’re just trying to lose yourself in the music, it really is frustrating.
On to the music and the show itself. All musicians on stage were clearly at home with the repertoire of songs and it showed that they have been performing it together for a long time, and enjoy doing so. Every person on stage seemed really in tune with each other and this made for a trusting audience.
There was very minimal talking to the audience which was actually quite refreshing. They said that we were here to listen to the music and they were there to play not talk, so that’s what they did and the music really did speak for itself.
It was great to be witness to them performing the legendary introductions that make Pink Floyd’s music what it is. The lengthy instrumentals were played with such intent it really did fill you with admiration for them. From ‘Shine on you crazy diamond’ to ‘Comfortably Numb’ the audience were lapping up their every chord and when the most famous songs were played the audience were beside themselves with excitement and anticipation.
It’s difficult to single out particular performers as they were all genuinely experts in their own part, but I do have to mention Faye Brookes. She was the one to provide the iconic female vocals on ‘The Great Gig in the Sky’ and she didn’t disappoint. Her approach was slightly softer than the original but it didn’t make it any less impacting. At times I did wish she would let herself go a little more with it, but at the same time I could appreciate the need for a strong technique to reach the incredible vocal heights successfully. For me, Brookes really shone through during her backing vocals and guitar playing. At times I thought her voice was actually another instrument being played and the realisation it was actually her voice was moving. I also have to mention when she played the cow bell in ‘Run for your life’. I’ve never before seen a cow bell played with such intensity and I have to admit I couldn’t take my eyes off her.
The show was also visually striking. They were accompanied by an array of laser lights which were of course perfectly timed to the music and made for a thrilling production. There was also a back drop projection which showed various images to coincide with each song, from ballerinas to soldiers at war, to various leaders from throughout the years. As the music became more challenging so did the images and they each perfectly matched the other.
Overall, I couldn’t fault the seven incredible musicians and the show they put on. They certainly did the music of Pink Floyd justice and you can see why they have been so successful thus far.
Reviewer: Sara Woodruff
Reviewed: 2nd July 2016
North West End Rating: ★★★★