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Of course, while the night was about more than just one song, when that song did arrive it almost lifted the roof of the arena out of sight. It's easy to forget that the chorus of Don't Stop Believin' only appears at the very end of the song after a mighty long tease. Post Glee it was time for Journey and their fans to reclaim melodic rock's greatest classic, and both did so in magnificent style.
In fact my one gripe would be that during Journey set Neal Schon guitar should have been turned UP . . . especially during the solos.
Last night I was lucky to be (most definitely) standing near the front in Block B. I was further back than that for Rush a couple of weeks ago and still it sounded fine to me although others complained about a terrible sound mix.
It interesting to read the comments about the sound quality, for Journey in particular.
Foreigner singer Kelly Hansen took total command of the LG Arena as he bounced on to New Balance 574 Grey Orange the stage. He is truly an inspired replacement for original singer Lou Gramm, possessing a mighty set of pipes as well as an utterly infectious stage presence, the perfect foil for the group's uber cool leader and guitarist, the English born Mick Jones. Hansen even found time for a walkabout into the crowd.
I fear it the nature of these big arenas that there are going to be hot and cold spots regarding sound quality, especially up in the rafters.
a problem with arenas in general or the LG Arena in particular? Any sound engineers out there?
Schon is the beating heart of the band, Pineda brings along a youthful vitality and enthusiasm, a non stop energy and a voice that is as near as is humanly possible a perfect replacement for Journey's much missed singer Steve Perry.
really be three giants of the American AOR scene on stage in front of them, three bands that pretty much define the very meaning of melodic rock?
The "white noise" issue interests me. I get none of that and I beginning to wonder if 33 years of gig going has finally put paid to the higher register. A friend in his 20s said "white noise" was a real issue at Rush.
Journey in Birmingham with Foreigner Styx Express Star
Talking of heroes, Journey have a new one. Their Phillipines born singer Arnel Pineda has clearly grown into his role over the past four years and was on a mission to win hearts and minds as he led the band through possibly the greatest back catalogue in melodic rock.
As well as the rapturously received ballads I Want To Know What Love Is and Waiting For A Girl Like You, Foreigner proved they could rock out too, with Feels Like The First Time, Hot Blooded and Juke Box Hero hitting the mark.
From my own experience and others it does seem that the whole sound quality experience at the LG Arena depends entirely where you are sat (or standing!).
I be interested to learn a little about the science of that. Is it New Balance 1300 National Parks
Click on the image top right to start our concert photo gallery
As for Foreigner, anyone who has seen them before knows what to expect for first timers they are a revelation live. Kelly Hansen is up there with the GREAT front men . . . and I speak as someone who saw Freddie Mercury in his prime!
While lead guitarist Neal New Balance Ml574
After the last song of the main set, Anyway You Want It, Journey returned for their traditional encore, Lovin' Touchin' Squeezin', and a chance for the fans to sing themselves hoarse one last time.
Three tracks from the band's new album Eclipse, were aired, with the single City Of Hope dedicated to Pineda's hometown of Manilla showing that Journey have not lost the knack of crafting a perfect and uplifting, melodic rock gem.
Miss America, Come Sail Away and Renegade were stand out moments, with the absence of their sickly sweet ballad Babe the only thing thing that might have had all but the die hards scratching their heads. In truth it hasn't been a part of Styx's set for some time and was not missed.
Well, yes it could. And it was a night that proved that if you, ahem, don't stop believing, dreams really can come true.
Kicking things off with Jonathan Cain's keyboard intro to Separate Ways (Worlds Apart), Journey raised the roof with both singles and fan favourites, from the ballads Open Arms and Faithfully, to Stone In Love, Lights and Wheel In The Sky. Drummer Deen Castronovo impressed as ever when he took over on lead vocals for a spine tingling Mother, Father.
Totally agree with most comments, Foreigner stole the show, they were excellent, Styx were great too, too short a set for me. Journeys sound really spoiled their act. We were in block B, about 25 rows from the front, centre of the stage, and the sound was dire, too loud, Arnels voice WAS drowned out by the Guitar work of Schon and the band, pity, he seems to have a fantastic voice. My Brother actually spoke to the sound mixer at the end of the concert about the quality of the sound where we were, mixer man said that he thought it was OK everywhere else. Seems not from the other comments.
My own experience last night was that the sound was superb throughout. After taking photos I watched Styx from the side of the stage and was amazed at how good the sound was even there.
Hopefully any fans who think last night's concert was just a dream have this review to prove that it really did happen. And then some.
Music photography by Ian Harvey/RocktasticPix
First off were Styx, with Tommy Shaw and James JY Young leading proceedings as they powered their way through a criminally short set which still packed a mighty punch.
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I agree with the last comment. Journey vocals were drowned out by the guitars, which was a shame, because I really wanted to hear Arnel sing. He proved he had the pipes when he sang a capella on the slow songs. Foreigner stole the show. They had everyone moving from the first song to the last. Styx was a bit of a let down, but I think the crowd wasn into it yet, which may have made things a little boring. If Styx and Foreigner would have switched spots, things may have been a little different. All in all, it was still a great time.
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