— Review by Jon Jackson. Photos by Keith Brake.
Hello Friends! I am afraid I must start this by telling you a secret. I am not a big Pink Floyd fan. In fact, I am sick of Pink Floyd. While I understand this is not easy to read for some people, it is the truth. I grew up listening to this band. I was never a fan of “The Wall”, I liked “Dark Side of the Moon” as well as “Wish You Were Here”. Outside of that it was mainly the hits and not so much the deep cuts. Never the early stuff. To be completely honest, if I am listening to the radio I would typically change the station if one of their tunes were played.
Pink Floyd fans I am sorry we started off this way. You need to know where I am coming from to get perspective. I will throw you a quick bone and make you feel better before we continue. I feel similar about Rush and Led Zeppelin.
My brother from another mother Keith Brake asked me if I had seen El Monstero and here we are. I was excited to check this out and wanted to put this on my list of shows that I have seen. After all, it’s a holiday tradition in St Louis to go see El Monstero at the Pageant. Every person I know that has seen them goes almost every year. It is a guaranteed great experience and I had to be a part of it.
We arrived in time to grab a seat at stage right with a good view of the stage. One thing I noticed right off the bat was the extended stage rig. This stage took up the majority of space that the mosh pit would reside in at typical Pageant shows. There was also 4 stripper poles. 2 on this new stage section and 2 more on the sides of the main stage. I was not really sure what to expect and I can tell you my mind was already racing with suggestions.
The place went dark and in dramatic fashion the band slowly and dynamically made their way to the stage. Everyone was wearing a uniform which gave them all continuity as well as played into the show portion of the evening. The entire room already filled with fog started showing the abundant amount of lights and lasers. I have never seen this kind of production at the Pageant. It was an Arena show and I was loving every second of it. Did I mention fire? FIRE!
This band is tight. Every song carefully played to honor the way it was recorded. All musicians did what was needed in addition to adding to the show. Each member had a time to shine and shine they did. The players involved were not all singing or holding a microphone. They also danced, remember the aforementioned stripper poles, acted (soldiers holding flood lights) and other circus stunts including a singer being lowered in from the rafters. If they actually had a flying pig I would not have second guessed it at all.
So many things to look at throughout the evening. It was hard to catch everything and I believe that is why this band can play a whole week at this venue. There were fans that new every word to every song and sang along all night. Others, myself included were staring in awe just trying to soak it all in. 50% of us spend each day arguing with the other 50%. A lot of different people enjoying the same thing at the same time is something to witness. I love to reflect on that, even if for just a short time.
I was amazed at the level of detail in this show. Multiple wardrobe changes. Stage changes. Amazing visuals with the lights, lasers and video screens. Don’t forget Fire! That is a big deal in this size venue. It was just a great overall experience. Those that attend multiple shows each year, I understand. You can catch something you missed by going again.
While I am not a super fan of the music, what I was familiar with was as close to perfect as it could have been. You will never get the chance to see Pink Floyd again. If you have not seen this band, go do it! You will be impressed and will more than likely lead to them adding more nights next year.
Not Now John
Another Brick in the Wall Part 1
The Happiest Days of Our Lives
Another Brick in the Wall Part 2
Is There Anybody Out There?
Pigs on the Wing 1
Pigs (Three Different Ones)
Pigs on the Wing 2
Let There Be More Light
See Emily Play
Summer Of ’68
Goodbye Cruel World
Run Like Hell
Another Brick in the Wall Part 3
Shine On You Crazy Diamond (Parts I-V)
Have a Cigar
Wot’s… Uh the Deal
Wish You Were Here
Speak To Me
On the Run
The Great Gig in the Sky
Us and Them
Any Colour You Like
The Gunner’s Dream
Take It Back