There was no curtain at all but it is lifted now: TD's 2012 tour started yesterday evening in Budapest, at the exceptional concert hall Palace of Arts. A full house of almost 2,000 people (some of them came from all around the world) received quite well the band's new show and gave a standing ovation at the end.
The stage was organised in the way we got used to last year but it put an even much better overall impression on the watcher. Video projection could be seen on a half-transparent screen which left some sight of the big organ of the hall. Four traditional big balloons were waiting for the encore to be freed and reach the hands of the audience.
The first 30-35 minutes of the program was mesmerizing; a smart selection of meditative tracks from last years' albums was a brave step to take. Musicians onstage played only atmospheric sound paintings on the monotone but powerful sequencer lines - no tunes, no tricks disturbed the inner processes of the listeners. A very TD-ish solution!
After this section, a newly arranged Song of the Whale was the first structured track which we want to be released as soon as possible. This song was the first clear sign of Bernhard having a good day for music making - what this guy offered during the night was never even approached during his whole career. Good luck for us. The very new and rocky Logos caused the first big applause, and soon perhaps the very best song from today's era, The Silver Boots of Bartlett Green came.
The second part started with Edgar's live piano solo - on a short synth. He played a Ricochet variation, but the real surprise only followed this: a real, resequenced Ricochet Part Two waved out from the speakers, covered by an improvised texture of all the members. Five-six minutes of pure youth and memories.
Some peaks from the second part: Lady Monk's advanced version, Long Island Sunset, Blue Bridge with a duet of Linda on saxophone and Edgar on guitar (played in his trademark style with strange, Mozartian rhythmics), Alchemy of the Heart, Homeless (Bernhard has beaten Zlatko?), Warsaw in the Sun (with the not-so-lucky choice of Linda playing the lead on sax), and finally Madchen Auf Der Treppe/White Eagle. (The setlist is not full of course.)
For the encore we could play with the balloons while the virtuoso Hoshiko played a very capturing pop version of Vivaldi's Summer from the Four Seasons. One Night in Space always rocks the hall and this event wasn't an exception, and the very final track, a remix from the Star Wars themes somehow shocked everybody. But it wasn't the last happening: while Edgar started to prepare for his closing words, Hoshiko grabbed a traditional Japanese sword, and held a short ritual ceremony with cutting his instrument into two pieces! Not everybody noticed this intermezzo but half of the crowd acknowledged it with a big laugh.
To sum it up, it is perhaps the best concert program and show of the last years, played very live, very rocky, with carefully selected parts of music. Two energy bombs, Bernhard and Iris are bearing the show while the synth boys are doing their task quietly. Hoshiko is a nice add-on (_really nice), and she has become a real TD member with her perfomances in the encore.
The projected video program is also probably the best of all kinds until now, and the screen's interesting texture plus the big organ gave a very monumental feeling for the whole time.
Meet and greet was also a part of the story with a huge attack of domestic and international fans. The band received it very well with full of energy, only Edgar seemed a bit tired. Hoshiko was a newbie during this section, it was clear but she will get used to this rush, we suspect...