REVIEWS: 16 SEP 2007 - VANCOUVER, BC

Been to a Vai show? Review it here. Please post in the appropriate thread for each show!
Mikey
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Did you attend this show at the Commodore in Vancouver?

Please post your review of the show here. Steve and the band love reading your reviews.

Please do not post in this thread if you did not attend the show.

Jeroen
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Hakky
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Well, woohoo! Nice Show and the EVO was great!

Had a beer to digest it now, and I am so stoked I dont know if I'll be able to, well, call it sleep.

Oooo-- is it ewww or ohhh, or just OMG!
Loved the syncopations and guitar tone for the solo.
Must take alot of practice in sound check or rehearsals....

Freak Show Excess-- Insane. Not for the faint.

Die To Live- very good, excellent rendition.

Tender Surrender- Gotta love the end!!!

Firewall- loved the intro, great solo.

All in all one of the best shows I've seen period.

Thank you Jeremy for handing me the stick at the end of the show-- stoked bro!!! Nice solo too, especially after 2.5 hours of being stuck up at the back of stage....lol.

EVO was great, Mikey very kind and Steve-- thank you for the performance, I will return every time!!!

=D

Happy Canuck Drummer
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Absolutely a terrific show!
I have only seen Steve play here with Dweezil last winter, so this was highly anticipated. As for the songs, You guys played all the ones I wanted to hear thanks again. All About Eve, Oooo, Freakshow Excess, Building the church, Tender surrender, the list goes on, but those were the ones that stole the show. I am very pleased with the new band, it sounded very nice, and the stage was made up very cool. Great lighting and sound all night. My ears are still ringing, probably for days to come.
So thanks for the awsome show Steve, and a special thanks to the band for working so hard to produce such amasing music. I still can't believe how well they can perform at all times. And yet still have fun!
Vancouver loved you guys last night. enjoy your days off, you guys all deserve it! have fun
Lord of the Wasteland
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Wow, what a show! Two and a half hours and a big difference in song selection since Steve was here in 2005, too. "Building The Church," "Tender Surrender," "Freak Show Excess," "The Audience Is Listening" and "Whispering A Prayer" were definite highlights. Steve even busted out the first few bars of "Damn Good" from his David Lee Roth days at the beginning of "All About Eve"! The violins are a welcome addition as is Jeremy's "traveling" drumkit. It had to chuckle when Steve mentioned he stole Ann Marie Calhoun from Jethro Tull, so now Ian Anderson wants to kick his ass :).

I had an Aftershow pass that came with my regular media photo pass and it broke my heart to not go but I waited around until midnight and finally had to pack it in. I had to be up for work at 5:30 this morning and still had a 45-minute drive ahead of me :cry:. Please post what I missed so I may live vicariously through those who did attend.

Here is the setlist:

Now We Run
Oooo
Building The Church
Tender Surrender
Band Intro
Firewall
The Crying Machine
Dave's Solo
I'm Becoming
Die To Live
Freak Show Excess
Violin Solo
All About Eve
The Beast of Love
Angel Food
Drum Solo
The Audience Is Listening
The Murder
Juice
Whispering A Prayer
Tarus Bulba
~ENCORE~
Liberty
Answers
For The Love Of God

I took over 200 pics and they'll be up on Metal Rules soon but I will post the direct link here when the full review goes live (hopefully by the weekend).
smegolas
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I just saw the Vancouver show, awesome as always. I’ve completely lost track of how many times Ive seen Steve play, every time he’s been in town since the early 80s I think. The Evo experience was great too. Anyways, I have a few constructive comments, things that could make the show much more enjoyable (at least for me). Steve:

1. The band is too loud. Without earplugs, the volume is almost unbearable. Yet earplugs are a pain in the ass, and interfere with the sound quality. Why does it need to be so loud that people need to have earplugs to listen – seems counter intuitive – earplugs to listen to music. Even with them, my ears are still ringing the next day. Music shouldn’t make your head hurt.

2. You are too loud. Naturally, everyone goes to the show to hear you, but your guitar is so loud it drowns out the other musicians. This is most evident during the guitar/violin unison runs, where you had to strain to hear the violin. I might get slammed on this one, but I’d prefer more balanced levels.

3. Please please please opt for venues with seats! The Commodore Ballroom (Vancouver) might be a cool place, but the Orphium or the Queen E are much better. I used to be able to stand for 4 hours straight at a concert, but no more. Its tough to enjoy the encore when your back/legs/feet/knees and begging for forgiveness. Plus its very difficult to see much when you are trying to look around peoples heads (and Im a tall guy).

So, the music’s great, obviously. The show is great. And Ann Marie Calhoun?!? YOWSA!!! But it would be soooo much more enjoyable if we were able to relax and sit down, be able to see the stage, and not need earplugs or get ear damage. Thanks Steve for your time, you are da man.
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Hakky
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Me again. I've slept...

Opening with Now We Run is an awesome start, sooo energetic.
Ooo is so wack, I love it, reminds me of Flexable.

Taurus Bulba was awesome love that riff and wailing solo.
The Sitar solo to FSE was nice and choppy-smooth!

Steve sure jumps and rocks for Audience is Listening, I am surprised the wah pedal can take the abuse?? And the floor-fan even...
:guitar :twisted:

***I hope Paul the guitar tech keeps learning and taking notes***

Too bad we were not supposed to take pics, I had to respect that and yet probably could've snapped a few off during the set.

As for the sound, I was front row and there for the soundcheck and heard the developed audio mix. I thought it was pretty good. The many windows of the Commodore may have added a certain refraction of high-end reverb.
("Give me a big rock" - S. Vai, overheard at soundcheck)

I have to say, ya it's loud but I never wear earplugs.
I've played many gigs (that weren't loud enough for me to hear my drums) and my take is-- if you don't feel it in the chest, or it doesn't shake your flare-pants, it needs to be louder.
I still have great hearing, maybe I just have a thick skull?? =P

And I can hear ya Smeg, legs/feet, but I think the venue of the Commodore is sweet and intimate compared to the wine tasting or tea-sipping at the QE or Orpheum.
I also think those venues are more expensive to rent (union staffing levels), but could be wrong.

Too bad the Plaza of Nations concert bowl is toast, G3 1997 was pretty sweet there...
smegolas
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Hakky - was that show in 97 the one with Robert Fripp (aka the Tragically Fripp?) Was that really 10 years ago? I was there, the sound might have been good, but that is the one time I can really remember being disapointed with Steve's playing, I really thought he had an off night. Cant believe it was 10 years ago.
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Hakky
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Yup, September 26, 1997.
Rain, wind, more rain, some noise from Fripp...

I enjoyed that gig particularly because I was lucky enough to work the catering & backstage.
I even made Steve's vegan primavera tofurella casserole, but maybe I shouldnt admit to that...hehe.

Well from that show I do remember that Fire in the House started out with a glitch-- the sirens failed or stopped or something, and they had to redo the stage entrance, albeit to lesser effect.

I can also recall a really icky note or two (20th fret or so)
in crucial parts of Tender Surrender.
Steve made a pretty 'icky' but funny face too...
Other than that, Little Alligator was pretty good, and FTLOG was good too I thought.

Funny thing is, they were there a day early, and after college that day I dropped in on the soundcheck, there was no fencing around it yet. Then I fluked out and landed into helping the catering gig! Woohoo! Paid to work a VAI show backstage!

I hope the food wasn't off that night.
;)


10 years after...yup.
I had a poster from that show signed yesterday, and Steve was like, "Whoaa, look at this one.", to which I declared its age of a decade-- nearly to the day!

During signing/photo op, I also snuck in a mention of how much I love
:peace Burning Rain and
:headbang Iberian Jewel
and Steve replied in gratitude, "Thank you, ya, we should bring those back, we should play those again."

Anyhoos, until then, I still have to get tix to ZPZ for December 20th man!
=)
DrumShire
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Away: Steve Vai and String Theories: 3
Home: Commodore Ballroom, Vancouver: 2
(Special mention: Carrot Top was over the top on silver anniv strat)
Duration: OVERTIME
Verdict: TIGHT

Highlight: Steve forgot to plug in (or was it 'staged'...pardon the pun...?)

This was a fitting tribute/sequel/ending to the original G3 (yes, the best) reunion after August of last year's Satch and Eric show at CBBC. Hoped to have heard stuff from way back (where was "Attitude Song" or "Call It Sleep/Blue Powder"?)
Bottom line: Frank's spirit is much alive in all of us! Humour me
Coaching Tip: "Head-Cuttin' Duel" with Zach

Thanks, Steven
Grimula
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Concert was amazing !! Everyone was really chill

Soo many people smoking pot haha was great times for all

the way vai plays it will always be crazy loud cause all he does are those
high pitched squeels pretty much haha which are the loudest thing you can do on the guitar i find

definately one of the top concert experiences..Such a good entertaining show

Definately going to go again if he ever comes back to van
quiksilver98
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smegolas wrote:I just saw the Vancouver show, awesome as always. I’ve completely lost track of how many times Ive seen Steve play, every time he’s been in town since the early 80s I think. The Evo experience was great too. Anyways, I have a few constructive comments, things that could make the show much more enjoyable (at least for me). Steve:

1. The band is too loud. Without earplugs, the volume is almost unbearable. Yet earplugs are a pain in the ass, and interfere with the sound quality. Why does it need to be so loud that people need to have earplugs to listen – seems counter intuitive – earplugs to listen to music. Even with them, my ears are still ringing the next day. Music shouldn’t make your head hurt.

2. You are too loud. Naturally, everyone goes to the show to hear you, but your guitar is so loud it drowns out the other musicians. This is most evident during the guitar/violin unison runs, where you had to strain to hear the violin. I might get slammed on this one, but I’d prefer more balanced levels.

3. Please please please opt for venues with seats! The Commodore Ballroom (Vancouver) might be a cool place, but the Orphium or the Queen E are much better. I used to be able to stand for 4 hours straight at a concert, but no more. Its tough to enjoy the encore when your back/legs/feet/knees and begging for forgiveness. Plus its very difficult to see much when you are trying to look around peoples heads (and Im a tall guy).

So, the music’s great, obviously. The show is great. And Ann Marie Calhoun?!? YOWSA!!! But it would be soooo much more enjoyable if we were able to relax and sit down, be able to see the stage, and not need earplugs or get ear damage. Thanks Steve for your time, you are da man.
Are your ears made of ferry dust?
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quick observation I had on the sound: last Sun.
The amps and such are fine volume at the start of the show, but when mic'd up with the 57's (or whatever else) I find it hard on the ears. Pa's seem much harsher to me especially when they are being gradually turned up throughout the show. So by the end when the sound is maxed out for the night, you end up hearing more frequencies comming out of the mic/ PA than the sweetness of the amps on stage. That is what bothers my ears, and I wish there was a better solution, but things need to be mic'd.
Anyways, I thought the sound was great, other than the usual harsh frequencies associated with high volume.
just my $0.02
quiksilver98
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Lotus Eater wrote:quick observation I had on the sound: last Sun.
The amps and such are fine volume at the start of the show, but when mic'd up with the 57's (or whatever else) I find it hard on the ears. Pa's seem much harsher to me especially when they are being gradually turned up throughout the show. So by the end when the sound is maxed out for the night, you end up hearing more frequencies comming out of the mic/ PA than the sweetness of the amps on stage. That is what bothers my ears, and I wish there was a better solution, but things need to be mic'd.
Anyways, I thought the sound was great, other than the usual harsh frequencies associated with high volume.
just my $0.02
american or canadian 0.02?
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rio_perros
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The Steve Vai & String Theories Concert at the Commodore on September 16th, 2007 was outstanding; from the moment Mikey commenced the EVO Experience, to the last congratulatory handshake from Steve and having Anne Marie, Dave, Bryan, Alex, Jeremy and Zack autographing my photos at the aftershow. The EVO Experience was organized by Mikey, who did a fantastic job ushering us around and handing out goodie bags(when available frc photos please). We were also able to ask Steve questions regarding his musical career and future projects, autograph photos and assorted memorabilia; as well as, being treated to handling the precious FLO. The EVO was cool; because fans, are regular people too(more bands should do this). During this time, I even met folks as far away from Mexico, California, Washington, Alberta, Saskatchewan and all over British Columbia. The soundcheck was an interesting process to hear and see, as the ingenious Mr.Vai conducted his band, lighting and sound to perfection, everyone seemed to absorb it all. The venue was similar to Ingolstadt and Ulm as the Commodore is a nice intimate place to have a show(Frank performed here in the late 70s). Throughout the entire concert, a proficiency of sound emanated from the stage as these musicians were sharing their talent with us and the artistic array of lighting made a, come to life, "Masterpiece Painting". There was Steve's subtle and unrivalled solos, Dave's hammered guitar riffs, Bryan's electro bass funk, Jeremy's stick weilding percussion, Anne Marie's and Alex's energizing violins duel and Zack's dexterity blended and fused beautifully. I wouldn't have thought of going to church on that particular Sunday, when there was String Theories in town, "Whispering a Prayer". Vancouver was lucky to have been on the tour date list and if you haven't yet seen the show, do so because it's without a doubt, one of the best performing tours and experiences around. All the best to you musicians on the rest of your touring dates. Cheers again from Vancouver Island <*))))))>{ :D
alibenn
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quiksilver98 wrote:
Lotus Eater wrote:quick observation I had on the sound: last Sun.
The amps and such are fine volume at the start of the show, but when mic'd up with the 57's (or whatever else) I find it hard on the ears. Pa's seem much harsher to me especially when they are being gradually turned up throughout the show. So by the end when the sound is maxed out for the night, you end up hearing more frequencies comming out of the mic/ PA than the sweetness of the amps on stage. That is what bothers my ears, and I wish there was a better solution, but things need to be mic'd.
Anyways, I thought the sound was great, other than the usual harsh frequencies associated with high volume.
just my $0.02
american or canadian 0.02?
I'll take Canadian as it's worth more than US :)
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