Tuesday, March 9, 2021

March 9th 1992, My Bloody Valentine at the Opera House


Some shows gain a legendary status in people's minds. It might be a particular night in the history of a band, or it might be the result of a surprise guest. Maybe it was the night they dropped an anvil through the stage, or one of any number of other reasons.

My Bloody Valentine at the Opera House on March 9th 1992 has gained a certain legendary regard in Toronto concert history because it was loud. Really really really loud. The last twenty minutes of the set were taken up with an extended feedback drenched Wall of Sound paired with a bank of strobe lights that were left on in a solid burst facing the audience. People make note of the feedback when they talk about this show, but few of them reference the lights which were just as powerful, just as physical in the way they shone on the audience. I've mentioned Theatre of Confrontation on this blog before, and I would suggest that My Bloody Valentine took that idea and turned it up to eleven. Or twenty-five. This was Theatre of Devastation...

Is there anything more to say about the show? Sure, there were other songs and it was all pretty great, a band reaching an exceptional high point in the Shoegaze genre, but everything else about the show pales in comparison to that extended feedback and lights. It was overwhelming and enveloping and completely immersive, and once you gave yourself over to it there was something almost peaceful and soothing to it. 


I loved it, but when they came back to the Spectrum again a few months later I made sure to wear ear plugs and some sunglasses...

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