Review by Tommi Kolehmainen:
Here’s a detailed review of my second time experiencing The Prodigy live and the whole trip overall. It’s pretty long (yeah I got a little excited with the details) but I hope you enjoy the read! ????
Just got back home from Ruisrock Festival where I saw The Prodigy live now for the second time. Last time was November 2009 in Helsinki, so it has been almost two years from that! I live in Vantaa straight outside Helsinki, so last time it wasn’t a long way to see them. Now I had to travel almost 200 kilometres to Turku, where the annual Ruisrock festival was. One day ticket to the festival cost 70 euros, train tickets from Helsinki to Turku and festival bus tickets from the city centre to the festival area cost another 70. Not forgetting all the food and other stuff, so it wasn’t a cheap ride, but all worth it!
Before Prodigy we watched a couple bands with my friends. First off we just kicked back and sat on the grass watching Primus. It was a funny-sounding band with an incredibly talented bass player, it was all good. Then we circled around the festival area, went to see Paramore straight in the middle of the crowd. I knew only two songs from them and wasn’t quite feeling it, but I guess it was ok. The singer sure was crowd friendly and even let one fan to come up on stage to sing with them. Briefly saw some other bands as well but wasn’t that interested.
The Prodigy would start 15 minutes past midnight. We got our places in the front row against the fence, directly in front of the left speakers and the bass. First I was worried if I could see enough from there but it was good spot after all. Met randomly some other friends there before the show started when we were waiting, it was nice. One was a fan like me, a couple knew only three tracks but hey, what a good opportunity to start liking the band! There was some nice house music and dubstep playing before the show started (also Liam’s remix of “The Day I Die”!), it was good for warming up and the crowd started to become restless because they were already five minutes late.
Then it was time, the intro speech and sirens came in. When Liam walked on stage I lost my mind. The rest of the band followed and the show started with World’s on Fire as always. We were in front of the left speakers, so the left corner of the stage was very near. Keith came there almost instantly and noticed our excitement, and when we pointed at him, he pointed back with a smile. He came there again to sing the “if you’re so special, why aren’t you dead” bit pointing directly at us and I screamed it back to him. It was awesome to be recognized straight in the beginning! A cool thing with Liam is now that he used a small keyboard under the two main laptops a lot. The whole keyboard is only for making manual bass pounding sounds, and he did this often during the show. Some extra bass treat, thanks LH!
The show continued with Breathe and Omen, Poison was once again massive and I got totally blown away by it. The Poison ending fill sounded great live, although it’s a shame it takes away half of the original track. But yeah, I love that track and shouted the lyrics from the bottom of my heart. The crowd didn’t seem to know the lyrics that much, I think there were most of the fans in the middle and in the front, but the rest were just random people coming to see what’s up, because they were the last band to perform. Still the crowd seemed to enjoy themselves very much so it was nice. Maxim came down from the stage during Warrior’s Dance and walked straight past us. I tried to reach towards him but couldn’t touch him. He entered the crowd just like five metres to the left of us, oh no! I didn’t want to lose the spot so couldn’t do anything about it. Also Rob threw his bottle near us to the crowd, then it bounced straight in front of me to the ground, but I couldn’t reach for it over the front row fence even when I tried as hard as I could. Didn’t want to fall to the other side and get carried out so once again just had to deal with it. Those were the only moments with a little bad luck but I didn’t mind after all haha.
Firestarter was all Keith’s number once again, I don’t consider it to be their best tracks so I took easier for a while because I had raved so intensively before. Didn’t move and jump so much but shouted all the lyrics of course. Keith once again noticed us from the corner because he saw me singing the “cut down the fakers and burn them down” live lyric with him. We had eye contact during it so it was awesome again. Same with Run with the Wolves, he came there and pointed straight at me and my friends when we sang along and showed respect. I didn’t even remember how much the live drumming adds to Run, sounded intense! If anyone’s been wondering what is the arcade game controller Liam has in his set, he uses it right before Take Me to the Hospital.
Along with Poison, Diesel Power had the most immense bass of all the tracks. It also made me lose my mind big time! Those two were probably the best tracks of the set. Crowd jump of Smack My Bitch Up looked huge and it was a great moment. Back home I had made an A4 size paper saying WIND IT UP. After Smack I remembered it was in my pocket and tried to wave it to the band. Keith and Maxim were in front of us but they didn’t see it and it was too late. I don’t know if the would’ve played it anyway and I should’ve throwed the paper to Maxim when he was near us during Warrior’s Dance. But eh, what the hell, maybe next time!
The encore followed with Take Me to the Hospital, Their Law and Out of Space. Before Take Me to the Hospital Liam used his arcade controller-type of thingy to make and modulate some spacy sounds! The setlist was all the same as it has been lately, but it didn’t matter that much when we were having a good time. Of course it would’ve been more epic if they had played a brand new or a very old one. In their leagues the show was quite standard job for them, but a blast for the fans of course. It was an amazing show and I had a great time. The first time I saw them in 2009 was maybe a bit better gig overall, because it was indoors and it was indeed my first time. There’s just something magical and phenomenal about the first time. Then they didn’t play Thunder, but instead did Spitfire and Comanche (rest of the tracks were same). It was so different because there I was in the seated crowd dancing indoors, and now outdoors in the front row jumping and raving against the fence. The sound is also very different outside, it was alright for the majority of the show, but Invaders Must Die sounded very messy.
If I had to complain about something, maybe I could sense Maxim was a little bit tired and not as active as usual. He missed some of his usual live lyrics and also mistakenly said the last time they played here was 1997! They have played here two times after that. Later he corrected it was the first festival they played here since ’97, though. And I know they can do better and improve the setlist even though if was a wonderful show! To sum it up, another amazing experience to remember and I look forward to the next time when I hope they are ready to bless us with a handful of new banging tracks!
Maxim: “All that matters is that you are right in the middle here. If you ain’t here, you’re nowhere. If you are outside the fence buying drinks, you’re nowhere. If you’re not in Finland…fuck you! Hahaha!”
1. World’s On Fire
5. Thunder (Dubstep)
6. Warrior’s Dance
8. Run With The Wolves
9. Voodoo People
10. Omen (Reprise)
11. Invaders Must Die
12. Diesel Power Beats
13. Smack My Bitch Up
14. Take Me To The Hospital
15. Their Law
16. Out Of Space