Pearl Jam - Hard Rock Calling
REVIEW: A triumphant return for the rockers
The first of three Hard Rock Calling days in London's Hyde Park saw Pearl Jam headline one of the biggest shows of their long career to a sell-out 50,000 capacity crowd.
Kicking off with a rousing Given To Fly and the pounding Why Go, Eddie Vedder and the boys ramped up the energy with every song, before taking a breather with the singalong fan favourite Elderly Woman Behind The Counter…
Despite the scale of the event, Vedder was as charming and personable as ever, swigging from a bottle of wine and telling the crowd “Somehow we’ve been given the licence to come into this royal park and make as much noise as we like.”
A well paced set drew heavily on crowd pleasing numbers from the band's first three albums alongside those from Backspacer, last year's triumphant return to form.
Highlights included a touching cover of Joe Strummer's Arms Aloft In Aberdeen, guitarist Mike McCreedy's guitar showboating during Even Flow and a searing guest spot from support act Ben Harper on Red Mosquito.
As the band finished their epic set with traditional closer Yellow Ledbetter, it seemed if not for the enforced curfew ("The Queen's bedtime" as Vedder put it) both band and audience could happily have stayed all night.
GIVEN TO FLY, WHY GO, BRAIN DAMAGE, CORDUROY, GOT SOME, ONCE, WORLD WIDE SUICIDE, ELDERLY WOMAN BEHIND THE COUNTER IN A SMALL TOWN, AMONGST THE WAVES, EVEN FLOW, UNTHOUGHT KNOWN, NOTHINGMAN, ARMS ALOFT, NOT FOR YOU, OF THE EARTH, STATE OF LOVE & TRUST, DO THE EVOLUTION, WASTED REPRISE, BETTER MAN / SAVE IT FOR LATER
JUST BREATHE, RED MOSQUITO, BLACK, PORCH
GO, THE FIXER, ALIVE, YELLOW LEDBETTER