I don't think I've ever read more polarised comments about The Smashing Pumpkins, or specifically front man Billy Corgan, than any other band. Well bands I care about at least. Even leaving the gig tonight there was much muttering about the shit encore. I thought the encore was 20 or so minutes of self indulgent over the top overblown noisy howling guitar feedback driven brilliance. Or it was the Heineken. Whatever, it was a powerful end to what was overall a pretty good set filled with oldies and newies. To be fair to Billy he did warn everybody before the last song that some critics in the US had walked out during the encore. After about 10 minutes of the final song there was a steady stream of punters leaving the floor. Maybe they had a train to catch.
The Smashing Pumpkin line-up was very different from the last time they visited our shores. Billy is the only original Pumpkin left these days. The Pumpkins have always been Billy though. What matters is they sound the same - as good as ever. Billy claims to have mellowed but he still can't restrain himself from commenting when the next old classic song gets a bigger cheer than the previous new song. I think he also mentioned during the gig that he was all about the fans these days. He could be a right arse to the fans in the old days.
More on Billy and the Pumpkins from the SMH here and the critic from the SMH has a review of the gig here. It seems the critic wasn't thrilled with the show and I agree with a little what he says but I disagree overall. Click here for a set list and you be the judge as to whether there were enough oldies. As I mentioned I liked the last song, Gossamer, and the encore started with The Vines' hit Get Free with guest artists The Vines. Totally rockin' version too.
Did I mention that the gig was at Luna Park? Well it was.
Who'd have a roller parked at Luna Park? I think the ribbon gives it away. Down under the harbour bridge is a nice spot for wedding snaps. But at almost midnight? I hope their guests weren't waiting for them at the reception.