Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Before we were so rudely interrupted at Terra Vibe 4 years ago...

As I was saying, before I was so rudely interrupted 4 years ago...

...Depeche Mode have finally made it to Terra Vibe last Friday. So, did we... all of us? Apparently not, but I promised myself that this time I will not complain about the organizers and I will do my best to keep this promise until the end of this post... Let's see if I succeed!
As I have explained in previous posts, Terra Vibe is a far off place in the open country to the north of Athens, not easily reached by public transport. This should mean that it's better to have a car, but you'd still probably have to park it a far as 6km from the place (yes, it really did happen and the distance was really actually measured), and you might spend up to 2 hours getting out of there (I once saw a couple having sex on - not in - their car while waiting for the Terra Vibe car park to clear so they could get out. Because on top of that there's no lighting so it's pitch dark in there. Unfortunately there was a full moon that night, although I guess that probably made it more romantic). Anyway, for those who don't have a car there are special buses commissioned, some of them from travel agents. There were over 60 buses hired that night according to our driver.and the audience was estimated at 30000.

I chose to get a ticket with the earliest bus (5pm with doors opening at 7pm and concert starting at 9pm) not because I was afraid I would be late, but because I wanted to hang around outside browsing at the stands selling food and unofficial merchandise.

There wasn't really a queue as such outside, just quite a lot of people gathered outside the entrance. There was a second entrance but it was never opened.

The doors did NOT open at the appropriate time but a bit later. When I realized they had been opened, I stood behind the crowd of people gathered (about 20m from the entrance) and waited to get in. It took us about half an hour to go through these 20 metres. And when we finally got in we realized why: They had installed turnstiles behind the main gate. But only 2 turnstiles for 30000 people! (But as i've said, I'm not going to complain on this post)

The first thing some people saw was this stage and they gathered in front of it thinking that they just got themselves FOS privileges!

Since I got in quite early I had the opportunity to wander around the park...

...but finally headed to the check in points for the special tickets.

Mine was the VIP section, the same one I bought on the 2009 concert that never took place (The only difference being that in 2009 the ticket was 100% more expensive than it was now). This is because with this I was sure to be able to see the band, something which I wasn't able to do in 2006 when I went to see Depeche Mode again on Terra Vibe. The crowd was similar and though I heard the entire concert I couldn't see anything and I was lucky I wasn't squashed in that crowd. I usually buy a VIP ticket when I have to go to Terra Vibe because that section is a bit higher up so you get a clear view of the stage.

And so the concert started! The moment that never came in 2009

It was "Welcome To My World", the opening track from their latest album "Delta Machine". Several oldies and favourites came later such as "Walking In My Shoes", "Precious", "Policy Of Truth" and "Black Celebration"

There seemed however to be quite a lot of songs from the new album on the setlist and it was obvious that most of the crowd were not familiar with them

Just before "Heaven" the band played "Happy Birthday" for Dave who had celebrated his 51st birthday the day before (The day of the concert was actually Bono's birthday)

Things picked up towards the end of the main set with "Enjoy The Silence" and an amazing "Personal Jesus" with a Johnny Cash-like intro.

The closer however, "Goodbye", was admittedly an anti-climax...

And so the encore began... with "Home"...

"Predictable", I thought, since it was played both in 2006 and in 2009 in Barcelona. However, just after that, they surprised me with "Halo".
And after that, it was the moment I've been waiting for for 28 years:

"Just Can't Get Enough". Last time I experienced this live was at the "Rock In Athens" festival back in 1985 when a much younger Dave had placed the mike stand between his legs singing "I just can't get it up" instead...

And so it ended with "I Feel You" and "Never Let Me Down Again".
We headed toward the exits and that's when I found out that although the concert started at 9:15, the organizers hadn't managed to get everyone in until 10:30. I know I said I wouldn't complain but this is just too much. I was lucky that I was one of the first people to arrive and got in early, otherwise I would have been furious. But what can we do? The organizers, which are the only company in Greece to bring big names have hired the area that is Terra Vibe Park until 2025 (if we are to believe some stories circulating on the internet). By that time Greece will be back borrowing by the international "markets" (If we are to believe our prime minister). So if the organizers bring our favourite artists there, that's where we'll have to go. We have no choice. And not counting the fact that Terra Vibe is a "security nightmare" as a British friend described it.

01. Welcome To My World
02. Angel
03. Walking In My Shoes
04. Precious
05. Black Celebration
06. Policy Of Truth
07. Should Be Higher
08. Barrel Of A Gun
09. Higher Love (Martin on vocals)
10. When The Body Speaks (Martin on vocals)
11. Heaven
12. Soothe My Soul
13. A Pain That I'm Used To
14. A Question Of Time
15. Secret To The End
16. Enjoy The Silence
17. Personal Jesus
18. Goodbye
19. Home (Martin on vocals)
20. Halo (Martin on vocals)
21. Just Can't Get Enough
22. I Feel You
23. Never Let Me Down Again

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