July 9, 2012 – Oslo Spektrum, Oslo, NOR

Show at a Glance

  • Number of Songs: 29
  • Show Length: 2:01


Main Set: Long Road, Animal, Hail, Hail, Given To Fly, (Interstellar Overdrive)/Corduroy, Elderly Woman Behind The Counter In A Small Town, Low Light, Severed Hand, Even Flow, Green Disease, Red Mosquito, Daughter/(It’s O.K.), Immortality, Leatherman, The Fixer, Black, Why Go

Encore 1: Inside Job, Just Breathe, Breath, Mankind, Do The Evolution, Porch

Encore 2: Once, Smile, Mother, Alive, Rockin’ In The Free World, Yellow Ledbetter

Pearl Jam Show Notes 7/9/2012:

Mike joins X for “The New World” during their set again. Ed speaks in Norwegian to start off, leading into Long Road. Once Animal kicks in, it’s clear Ed is dealing with some throat issues, dropping some notes. By Corduroy he’s warmed up a little, sounding better, but afterwards he addresses the issue:

“It’s been quite a while since we’ve been here and we appreciate you coming to the gig. I was thinking I wasn’t going to have to say anything, but we’ve had a great tour and we’ve had great crowds and we’ve been excited to get here and I got a bit of a throat problem that started yesterday…I dunno, I must have kissed a sick Swedish boy or something. I’ll take any help you can give me, I appreciate it. I think Mike McCready is going to be taking over with some guitar playing tonight.”

The crowd responds with chants of “let Stone sing!” and Ed reacts positively. During the Even Flow solo, Ed wanders side stage and has security pass a fan’s “Smile” sign up to him. Following Green Disease, Ed says “…this is a request from Moscow…you know who you are,” before kicking into a blistering Red Mosquito, an appropriate song choice for someone feeling under the weather. Immortality begins with the extended guitar intro and sounds extra affecting with Ed’s weathered voice tonight. Leatherman makes its only appearance on the tour and is a fun, tight version. Mike dazzles on the Black solo as Ed leaves the stage for a bit to catch a breather. After the break, Ed doesn’t address the crowd at all, taking an extra few minutes of rest, and Mike starts Inside Job, the long intro giving Ed as much vocal rest as possible. Afterwards, Ed admits:

“It was a hard night last night because I knew I wasn’t feeling well. And then I was frustrated because I know we hadn’t played here in 12 years, and I wanted to be fucking great. And then at about 4 in the morning, and I wasn’t sleeping anyways, I got a call from the States that a good friend of ours had suddenly passed away. It was something no one expected and it happened in an instant. The worst part about it was that it’s been too long since I last talked to him, and I won’t get that chance again. I’m just pointing it out so if there’s people in your life that you care about and you haven’t talked to them in a while, I don’t want you to feel the way I am right now. Make sure you reach out and tell them you love them. Don’t be shy.  Thanks for letting us express that.”

Just Breathe leads into Breath, Ed holding the mic out to the crowd during the Breath intro vocal.  As anticipated, Stone gets on the mic and says “I would like to thank Eddie Vedder for just being fucking fantastic to us all…he doesn’t get thanked that often…” As Mankind starts, Ed starts coughing, the perfect time for a singing break. Evolution is a bit of a chore for Ed, but he gives what he can in an admirable effort. The crowd gives him some help and sings the guitar riff.  Ed’s sipping tea at the start of encore 2, leading to one of his best vocals of the night as the band slams into Once. Smile nods to the sign from earlier, with Ed noting:

“…this next song is fulfilling a request for a young man and a young woman that look about 22 between the both of them. I’m glad you’re safe up front. That says good things about a crowd like this, that the young ones can be up front. And here’s to the parents for having good taste, in each other…”

Rockin’ in the Free World features John Doe, DJ Bonebrake, and Krissy Teegerstrom. Ed thanks the crowd, exclaiming “oh, I feel better now!”  before Mike finishes off Ledbetter with some Van Halen-style finger-tapping in the outro.

Tom Gregory

Horizon Leg Patron

Ed was once asked why he sings about such dark subject matter and his response, which I'm paraphrasing, was something like that if you give yourself a way to express these emotions, maybe you can make some sense of them. By giving them a name and a shape and a rhythm you can maybe even gain some perspective or even mastery over them. Or maybe at least you won't feel quite as alone. That's was this music does for us. And beyond that internal relationship to the music, you discover this giant, wonderful community of people that somehow loves them just as deeply as you do. First you connect with the songs, the heart, the musicianship, and then you connect with everyone else who feels that same way too. As Ed sang at Pinkpop while scanning that vast, mud soaked crowd during Porch "it's a beautiful thing".

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