A Breath of Pure Oxygene

Last night, electronic music legend Jean-Michel Jarre graced the historic Tower Theater in Upper Darby, just outside Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It was the quatrième stop on his first, albeit brief tour of North America. Upon arrival at the venue, my best mate Todd and I were directed to the box office for ticket reassignment. Apparently, local interest in the artist was overestimated, leaving a large number of unsold tickets. As a happy consequence, our balcony third row seats became center orchestra fifth row seats!

I was unaware that revered Philly DJ/Producer Josh Wink was the opener; however, Todd and I chose to imbibe a bit rather than observe Wink’s set. The Tower bar offered a special ‘Oxygene’ cocktail, comprised of Grey Goose, soda, and cranberry juice.

I’m not overly familiar with Jean-Michel Jarre’s extensive oeuvre; my attendance of the show was sparked by interest in Jarre as a pioneering producer, and curiosity in his reputation for innovative concerts. Jarre came on at 9:05 PM, quickly kicked into full gear, and maintained a euphoric energy for the duration of his performance. Supported by two multi-instrumentalists providing percussion and keyboards, Jarre blended contemporary and classic material, augmented by spectacular visual and lighting effects that created a rave-like experience.

Jarre stepped out from behind his circle of technology several times to speak to the audience with a very warm and genuine demeanor, and happily shook many hands with the crowd gathered at the stage when the concert concluded at 10:50 PM. I get the impression that Jarre has the same positive spirit whether he’s playing to a crowd of one thousand or one million.

While not a massive fan of Jean-Michel Jarre going into the theater, I was certainly a convert walking out. And I can only hope to be in similar shape when I’m 68!

Posted on May 19, 2017, in Jean-Michel Jarre. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Amazing post dude! Really great to read your review. Wish I would have seen him too. I assume he performed “Brick England”!? Such a great collaboration with Pet Shop Boys!

  2. I was lucky enough to see him in Toronto from 3rd row centre (thought I might be too close to appreciate all of the lighting/effects, but instead found myself immersed in the beautific chaos). One of the best concerts of my life, and that really is saying something. Also the best sound of any concert I’ve attended, besting even Kraftwerk (who, at the same venue a few years ago, redefined “crystal-clear live music” in my mind).
    What a great great show. <3

    • After our seats were upgraded to five rows from the stage, I shared the same concern of being too close, and possibly missing the full visual experience of the performance. However, like you, I found the proximity quite exhilarating.

      As for sound – I can no longer attend any concerts without the safety of earplugs. I could feel the bass, so I knew it was loud. Once a concert reaches a certain decibel level (and they almost all do), it’s no longer comfortable, and not enjoyable.

      This was one of the best shows I’ve seen in a long time – easily in my all-time top 10.

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