Pearl Jam

September 22 at the Halifax Metro Centre.

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photo Chris Smith

Pearl Jam
September 22 at the Halifax Metro Centre.
“You’ll only need to write two words to review this show,” slurred the drunken gentleman behind me moments before Pearl Jam hit the stage. “Fuckin’ great.” Three hours and 30 songs later, it was pretty tough to argue with that assessment. With a stripped-down stage setup and a casual approach to performance—the band sauntered on stage without a hint of fanfare and added songs on the fly—the entire production had an intimate atmosphere that few stadium bands can match. Alternating between a bottle of wine and a guitar, Eddie Vedder didn’t miss a note all night, even after it became apparent the marathon music session was taking a toll on his vocal chords. And the band—accompanied by keyboardist Boom Gaspar—was just as good, banging out hits (“Jeremy,” “Daughter”) and b-sides (“Hard to Imagine,” “Breath,”) without hesitation. Some of the many highlights included a pedal-to-the-floor version of “Go,” the singalong favourite “Better Man,” and the extended jam in “Rearview Mirror.” Fuckin’ great? Fuckin’ right.

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