Transatlantic - "Arena", Poznan, 06.05.2010 (English version)

Aleksander Gruszczyński,

ImageI wasn't going to Poznań as a massive Transatlantic fan and I didn't come back as one. But this was a great evening. The guys were truly amazing. The power of Neal Morse's keyboards, the dynamics of Roine Stolt's guitar, the strength of Mike Portnoy's drumming and the effectiveness of Pete Trewavas' bass was stunning and add to that Daniel Gildenlöw on the second guitar... and percussion... and keyboards... It all created a fantastic night. Three hours of amazing music.

The guys performed the complete Whirlwind as the first part of the show and the classics from their first two albums as the second. The opening was already massive. The Whirlwind overture sounds amazing live. So do Rose Coloured Glasses and Dancing With Eternal Glory. The first part of the show was a fabulous display of the guys' musical skills so what would you say about the second part?

It began with All Of The Above and included my personal favourite: Duel With The Devil. The songs sounded great live. It seems the guys have fun performing these. And if these songs were not enough, the encores were even better. Bridge Across Forever, an amazing duet by Neal Morse and Roine Stolt followed by Stranger In Your Soul which included Neal Morse playing the drums (and he is a great drummer too!), Mike Portnoy playing the guitar, Pete Trewavas playing the keyboards and Daniel Gildenlöw playing Pete's bass (together with Pete actually).

But I still have to say Transatlantic is one of the few bands that, in my opinion, don't sound better live. It just sounds equally good. And the musicians one by one:

DANIEL GILDENLÖW

The leader of Pain of Salvation was very important for the sound of the show. Although he seemed to be a bit lost standing in the back but his acoustic parts made some songs sound perfect.

PETE TREWAVAS

A skilled bass player but not much more last night. Or maybe it was just my impression. I guess so, because there were moments when Pete showed he is as much of a showman as Mike Portnoy or Neal Morse.

MIKE PORTNOY

I might not be a fan of Dream Theater but I am certainly a fan of Mike since yesterday! Drumming, singing, playing guitar, what else can this guy do? And it seems he has the best contact with the audience of all of the Transatlantics.

ROINE STOLT

The cold Swede sets his guitar aflame when performing with Transatlantic. I loved what he did in Poznań and it's not too much to say that he is one of the best prog guitarists in the world. And his characteristic voice is also impossible to fake.

NEAL MORSE

Great keyboardist, fantastic singer, skilled guitarist and sensational drummer. He was on the brink of destroying his keyboards when he moved to take over the drums from Mike Portnoy during Stranger In Your Soul and showed he could as well be the drummer.

THE AUDIENCE

By the stage, where I was standing (and where most of the people were standing) it was a burning rock concert atmosphere but the venue was over half empty. God bless Mr Piotr Kosiński for organising the concert but unfortunately the turnout was far smaller than he could have expected.

THE VENUE

Poznań's Hala Arena is a multi-use hall which can hold about four thousand people. The promoter could have expected a bigger turnout having names like Portnoy, Stolt, Morse or Trewavas on the bill. It ended with about one thousand people arriving to the show. I hope the guys from the band won't be to disappointed and will return to Poland some day.

THE SOUND

Loud as hell, but I could have moved further away from the stage if I wanted to. And I didn't. I haven't seen many so well sounding shows.

All in all, I am very happy I decided to go and see the show, because I would be very disappointed if I didn't. Transatlantic certainly isn't like Titanic and all the icebergs better run away because when faced with this Transatlantic they have no chance.

The setlist:

1. The Whirlwind (ca. 70 minutes of music)
--intermission--
2. All Of The Above
3. We All Need Some Light
4. Duel With The Devil
--encores--
5. Bridge Across Forever
6. Stranger In Your Soul
MLWZ album na 15-lecie