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Show Report: Gary Numan at the Gothic in Denver 10/28/2010

Shot from the back of the Gothic Theater. This gives you a good sense for the cool LED light columns and motor control LED spots

As part of a 16 city tour celebrating the 30th anniversary of The Pleasure Principle album, Gary Numan played the Gothic Theatre in Denver on October 28th, 2010. I finally got around to organizing photos from the show and thought I’d offer a show report.

First off the Gothic is just a fantastic venue. The first shot above was taken from the top balcony and gives you a sense for the number of people in attendance. Also, it illustrates the minimalist LED lighting rig. They had LED light columns. On the columns there were larger LED spots that were driven by motors. The lights could produce any color, chase and strobe. Mix this with continuous fog machine action and you got an incredible light show without any projected or LED video displays.

If you’ve never seen Gary’s recent performances, you might be surprised that learn that he’s primarily not a nostalgia act. He has continued to evolve, write, release albums, and perform - and these days is much closer in “vibe” to the dark industrial feel of Nine Inch Nails. I personally really like his more recent work as much as the classic work. The venue was filled with fans of all ages who seemed to know every song regardless of age which I think speaks well to Gary’s body of work.

Part 1 – The Pleasure Principle
The first half of the show they played songs from The Pleasure Principle out of album order. On the back line were Richard Beasley on Drums, Ade Fenton on Keys (very cool), David Brook on Keys. In the front line, Tim Muddiman on bass, Gary Numan on Keys and vocals, and Steve Harris on Keys.

Gary Numan playing songs from the Pleasure Principle on an Access Virus TI

Steve Harris and Gary Numan played Access Virus TIs for this segment of the show. The rigs in the back line looked like MIDI controllers driving virtual synths and rack gear. It sounded absolutely incredible and the wall of synths were super warm. The arrangements were freshened up a bit, and the band was really well rehearsed and the crowd was really into it. They finished this segment of the show with “Cars”, which from an energy point of view was a great idea.

Part 2 – Songs from Jagged and More
When the band played the last note for “Cars” the stage went black and in like 20 seconds roadies removed the two Virus TIs and when the lights came Steve Harris was wearing a guitar and Gary just had a mic. The energy of the show went through the roof as the band drove into the newer harder material.

They pretty much just were kickin’ ass and takin’ names from this point out and just played like maniacs and quickly moved from song to song without talking to the audience.

Continous fog machine action - awesome

I can’t remember everything they played (I was too busy being immersed in it all to note the set list), but they did play some of my favorite newer tracks like “In a Dark Place” and “Jagged”, “Pure” and “Halo”. The also slipped in a few older tracks like “Are Friends Electric” and rocked them up.

Final Thoughts
I saw Gary Numan when he came through Boulder in 2006 and played almost all new material. I appreciate that he’s kept growing as an artist and that he doesn’t want to be known for just the classic tracks. That being said, I enjoy this show immensely. Going from the classic to the new material worked really well as it got the crowd engaged from song 1 and kept them that way all the way to the end. Young and old, most of the crowd was singing along.

This was one of the best concerts of 2010 for me and I highly recommend you catch Gary in the future if you get a chance.

More Photos
I took a lot of shots with my iPhone 4. Use the embeeded plaer below to view my favorites from the show or checkout the set on Flickr

Links

Mark Mosher
Electronic Music Artist, Boulder, CO
www.ModulateThis.com
www.MarkMosherMusic.com

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