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When Wilson was found Wandering in Bangalore

When Wilson was found Wandering in Bangalore

And the moon did cast 
its shadows past
the trees and the clouds
by roads, through crowds
upon this darker
man, who's starker
than the rising sun.
With shades of golden-
grey that does gleam
in his voice that seems
to have sunk in every soul;
He raised parts to whole.
Cutting across the fences
of blissfully worn-out lenses;
Collecting sound and eyes
To run roots in the skies;

One of the wonders of the world did come down to the city. Through the drizzling rain and the crowd scattered between two stages, HummingTree successfully organized one of the most surreal shows in Bangalore's Progressive Rock Arena. Steven Wilson, the multi-instrumentalist, melancholia-genius enthralled a crowd that was floating on cloud 9, earlier this month. As he declared that the evening was the last pit stop on his 'Hand.Cannot.Erase' Tour I counted my blessings on being one amongst the front row fans who still hasn't recovered from the temporary tinnitus that the state of the art Marshal amplifiers induced.

Hand definitely cannot erase this love from the minds and hearts of the fans he has collected and "Indexed" over the last three decades. He shared Indiranagar Club's grounds with Patrick Watson and Jose Gonzalez who mellowed the crowd with their Indie and Folk music, nearly lulling us all to a state of reverie which was appropriate given how unreal the whole night was going to turn out in the end. Steven, as he entered the stage the crowd resurrected, finding it nearly impossible to not cheer for one of the very few Pop-metal songs that he has managed to write; “Hand Cannot Erase”. “Ancestral” followed with its dark and dreary yet energetic riff and continued to keep the crowd on its toes. 

The nearly 50 year old artist doesn’t look a day older than an adolescent full of vigour, even while performing one of the most crestfallen yet beautiful songs that no Porcupine Tree fan would have ever missed; “Lazarus”, which he dedicated to the late David Bowie. Later on, he caught us off guard when he almost rap-hissed "Index”. I almost find it hard to recollect the order of the songs as I often found myself lost in the lights with his silhouette like that of a magician looming over the stage. 

Right before he wished us goodnight, the uncanny tones of "Sleep Together" blew the returned clouds apart. When he exited the stage, the crowd grew weary and screamed for an encore which he gracefully conceded to. He did speak about Prince, the departed artist he admired and revered the most in the pop music paradigm. To no surprise he chose to cover "Sign o' the times" and not 'Purple Rain' as he is the salmon swimming upstream in every way. However, it was nearly 10PM when he announced that it was time that he performed the songs that happened to have "catchy chorus" as he wanted the crowd to sing along. “Sound of Muzak”, which ironically is a commentary upon reckless commercialization prevalent in mainstream music was the second last song that rang in our ears. Finally, he performed his favourite song of all times; “The Raven that refused to sing” -a heart rending story of a grieving old man who finds comfort in the delusion of his dead sister visiting him as a Raven, that unlike his sweet sister wouldn't sing to him. Steven Wilson with his band of excellent musicians took a bow and called it a night, but the spell he did cast that night has enchanted his fans here in India forever.