21 May 2011
'In Came America'
Denver. Show day.
The day of The Rapture is upon us  though we had far too much to do to be spending time being swept up to heaven. We did eventually get almost everything ready last night but inevitably there was still quite a run-around today. However, ready or not, the appointed time came, the doors were opened and in came America.
I made a point of being out in the house when The Fray finished their set, in order to see the new time and statistics video piece begin its 45-minute crawl around the video screen. Sure enough, the clocks began to appear in their rather enigmatic fashion and then the highly eclectic range of information, the numbers counting higher (or lower) moment by moment. I’ve got to be honest, I was very pleased with it and Luke, who made the piece, seemed greatly relieved. The information appears slowly but is oddly compelling and we were enjoying watching people watch it. We did have just a few cringe-inducing moments as there were a couple of typos and one or two factual errors but these will be fixed by Salt Lake City. I was just chuffed to death to see it all happening, the clocks keeping time and the trivia mountain piling up. I can only imagine what will end up getting added to it over the next few weeks.
With all due respect we knew that a North American audience (as with a Northern European audience) was not going to match the energy level we’d just experienced in Mexico but in truth this crowd gave the Mexicans a pretty good run for their money. It’s the best part of two years since these people bought their tickets to this show and, now that the day had finally arrived, they really made the most of it. It was a great show, the band were in great form and there was the most continual and intense smell of pot wafting in the air that I think I’ve ever been exposed to at an outdoor event. The gods of technology smiled upon us, the weather stayed dry and everything worked technically, including the new jackets, the new song arrangements and the debut appearance of Aung San Suu Kyi. I was very pleased.
We did a runner to the plane – the latest model “Air 360” – and a few celebratory drinks were had. Besides the show, there was great excitement at the advent of in-flight WiFi so practically everybody on board had a laptop out. We even got the first press reviews of the show whilst we were in the air. Inevitably we began Skyping and iChatting one another, up and down the plane – having video conferences with people sitting two rows behind, and so on – which seemed disproportionately hilarious at the time. Surfing on the thrill of the possible.
90 minutes later we landed in… er… Las Vegas.