Saturday, August 04, 2007

Gett Off (the tube at North Greenwich and turn right): Prince at the O2

Right, let's get the only disappointment of the evening out of the way first: he didn't play 'Batdance.'


I went 2 c Prince per4rm at th- Oh, wait, I can't keep this Prince-speak up all the time. I'm reverting to regular speak.

I went to see Prince perform at the O2 last night. Now, I've not been to the O2, or the Venue Formerly Known As The Millennium Dome before, so this was something of an adventure in itself. And I've got to say - what a wicked place! The tube station is super-close, and there's a nice open plaza in front of the dome, sorry, the O2, which has meridian lines and stuff (well, it is in Greenwich); yes, like Hiro from 'Heroes' I was able to straddle time (still working on the space bit).

The O2 itself is quite deceptive. Up close it actually looks really small, but when you get inside it's like a little town, with bars and restaurants and a little street. It's very cool. As a gig venue though… well, the O2 arena just became one of my very favourite places. It's deceptive in that while it has a large capacity, it actually feels rather small. It also has comfy seats and cup holders. And as Prince was playing in the round we were actually quite close to the stage. Good times!

There was one slightly annoying thing though - a message that flashed up 'Prince has requested that you do not take photos or videos of tonight's performance. This show is for your memories.'

This was followed by: 'Anyone caught taking photographs will be ejected from the arena.' Which made me look under my chair in case there was an elaborate ejection seat system hidden away. There wasn't, and using a technical loophole I snapped a pic of the funky stage before the show started (clever, eh?).

There was no support act, and Prince kicked off a little after 20:30. Oh. My. God. I really don't know what to say. This was one of the best gigs I've been to in a looooooong time. He had an awesome band, complete with legendary saxophonist Maceo Parker, a woman who looked like 1960s Diana Ross in a gold-sequinned dress and the biggest false eyelashes EVAH on drums, and some sassy woman in what looked like a cape workin' the crowd (she was about as close to 'Batdance' as we got). And Prince appeared through a hatch in the middle of the stage; in fact, he appeared and disappeared through the hatch several times, which makes me think he quite likes his hatch, even though I think it's technically a health and safety accident waiting to happen.

Anyway, to the music - over the course of a couple of hours he pretty much did everything I hoped he would, from 'Controversy,' to 'U Got the Look,' 'Purple Rain,' 'Guitar,' and 'Let's Go Crazy,' which was awesome because he teased us with the first line, "dearly beloved…", then left the mike to wander around the stage while whipping the crowd into a frenzy. That man had all of us in the palm of his tiny, tiny hand. He even invited some randoms from the audience onto the stage at one point where they danced in a slightly awkward fashion to 'Play that Funky Music,' which he stopped playing briefly to tell one bloke he was clapping in the wrong place.

All in all, then, a gig of EPIC proportions. And with Prince's promise that every night will be different, I'm thinking I might have to go back later in the run to see him again…

I'm gonna give the last word to my bro, who summed up the show best when, during one of Prince's virtuoso guitar solos, he lent across to me and said "Hendrix isn't dead."


So, yeah, that no photo thing… yeah, that means no pics, and no youtube videos, which is a bit of a shame because I'd loved to have shown you at least a tiny glimpse of the man in action.

Oh, you know I had to take at least a couple of pics - in a totally Secret Squirrel fashion of course!


Tara said...

I'm officially jealous. I've said I was jealous before because of the phaser you posted, but this time I'm OFFICIALLY jealous. I love Prince, and I love "U Got the Look". Those are some great photos, I'm glad you rebelled and took a few shots!

Inexplicable DeVice said...

However did you manage to see teeny tiny little Prince from even that relatively short distance? The man is barely bigger tahn a microbe!
He is a damned fine musician though. I must agree with Tara, U Got The Look is one of my favourites, too.

Inexplicable DeVice said...

Of course, 'than' is ye olde witch speak for 'than'...

Tim said...

Tara - He was amaaaaazing! Seriously great. He's playing 21 dates at the O2 - can you believe that!? It was a funktastic evening!

Inexplicable Device - That last photo? Life size.

Inexplicable DeVice said...

He lives in a match box, you know.

Tim said...

A purple one, of course.

Dinah said...

Aww, yay! I was sad for no pictures, and then there were pictures!

And straddling time...dirty! and intriguing...

Tim said...

Everyone loves pictures Dinah! I would've taken one of me straddling time, but it was dark by then and I don't think you would've been able to see anything. Trust me though: I did.

T-Bird said...

This is what it sounds like when doves cry... because I didn't get to see The Man Formerly Known As.

Dude, you are totally blogger viagra. I am feeling bad that I haven't updated nearly as much as you!

Tim said...

What do doves sound like when they cry? Is it a soft "oo-oo-oo" or a "AUGH!"

Answers on a postcard.

Ha ha ha!!! 'Totally blogger viagra' is SO gonna be my new tagline when I get round to changing it!! Don't feel bad about not updating, T-Bird - I'm sure you'll get back into the swing of it when you're in your unit.

*snigger* I said unit!