The Doors (of the 21st Century) Manchester Arena 2004

The Doors (of the 21st Century) Manchester Arena 2004
Line-up Ray Manzarek – keyboards, vocals; Robby Krieger – guitar, vocals; Ian Astbury – lead vocals; Ty Dennis – drums, percussion; Angelo Barbera – bass guitar.
More than 30 years after I saw The Doors at Newcastle City Hall, David and I went to see them at Manchester Arena. This version of the band featured original members Ray Manzarek and Robby Krieger, with new singer Ian Astbury of The Cult fame. Drummer John Densmore declined to take part in the project and sued the other band members over their use of the name. I had mixed views about going to the gig. The last time I saw the band Ray and Robby took vocal duties and the set was largely new material. This time it was clear that the set would be classic Doors and Ian was almost mimicking Jim Morrison. I wasn’t sure how I would feel about that, and how appropriate it was. However we did attend, out of interest as much as anything. The 20,000 capacity venue was nowhere near full, I would say it was a quarter full, if that. We had great seats a few rows from the front. There was no support act and the band were onstage for a couple of hours, the set consisting of a selection of Doors classics. Looking at setlists from the time it is clear that the band changed their set significantly from night to night. One disappointment for me was that they didn’t play Riders on the the Storm. But putting that aside, this was a great gig, which Ian carried off well. He looked like Jim, was dressed like him, and must have studied videos of his movements. But it worked well. We have the old songs, a psychedelic light show, and a band with two original members. It was just great and made me realise how amazing The Doors must have been in the day. David and I both enjoyed it. Setlist: Break On Through (to the Other Side); Not to Touch the Earth; Love Me Two Times; Alabama Song (Whisky Bar); Back Door Man; Love Her Madly; The Changeling; Hyacinth House; Spanish Caravan; Five to One; The Unknown Soldier; Peace Frog; Roadhouse Blues; L.A. Woman. Encore: Touch Me; Light My Fire

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