Danny Elfman at The Hydro


Tonight is not something I would normally consider going along to. However Rhursach has no one to ride shotgun with him. So, with nothing better to do, Maw & Paw elect to join him and inspect Glasgow’s newest venue The Hydro at the same time.
From the outside, it looks, for all the world, like something from the closing scenes of Close Encounters has suddenly decided to park illegally in Finnieston. It wasn’t until we were up close that we realised the ‘skin’ is translucent and you can actually see the punters inside going about their business, upstairs down escalators etcetera.


A technical delay ( a gas leak earlier in the day, we discover) sees us allowed into the building but not in the room. For over an hour, we are kept in the concourse,  which appears to have plenty of fast food outlets but, curiously, no chairs.
Noodles on the hoof, indeed!
I ask for some brown beer and am met with a blank quizzical look.
“Sorry,what do you mean?”

“Well there’s a fairly simple clue in what I asked !”

“Oh you mean BROWN beer. No, there’s no demand for that stuff”

“How can you say that after only being open nine days? Three quid for a bag of crisps? You’re just havin’ a laugh!”

Mister Grumpy’s out and taking no prisoners!

A very poor turnout sees us getting upgraded and we’re  seated only five rows from the front, instead of the second balcony

There’s more people than I’ve ever encountered on a stage. I use the word ‘encountered’, rather than ‘seen’, as most of them are not visible. A seventy plus piece orchestra and forty singers from the Maida Vale Choir to be precise.
In a normal orchestral setting, these people would be standing or sitting on a raked terrace so that you could see and hear them all. Tonight they’re all on a flat stage, so that means we can only see the first couple of rows.

Regardless of this, the sound is superb, absolutely crystal clear

A lady at the front is playing a theremin which makes me a very happy man!image

During the evening some of Burton’s pre-production sketches are shown on a screen above the stage. Some of these work, some don’t! A Batman clip without the respective sound effects, and only the music, makes the Batmobile look like what it really is – a wee model, on a string, getting pulled through the woods! All the movies get a fair hearing. I’d forgotten that the pair were responsible for Pee Wee’s Big Adventure’!

Towards the end, Mr Elfman comes out and sings songs from The Nightmare Before Christmas. He moves around the place very much like the character Jack Skellington, I notice. But, Oingo Boingo,what  a singer he is! (see what I did there?)


A good wee night however I can’t think what act would see me going back to The Hydro, though. Not really into those sort of big gigs anymore.


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