TORONTO - There's nothing muddy about Roger Waters.
The former member of Pink Floyd may have turned 63 this month, but he played an impeccable two-and-a-half-hour classic-rock concert at the Air Canada Centre last night.
The most notable aspect was the performance of Pink Floyd's signature 1973 record Dark Side Of The Moon, which took place after the intermission. It was like a Classic Albums Live show, except, you know, the real guy was there.
But the first half, which drew upon the vast Pink Floyd catalogue and Waters' solo career, could have stood alone as a concert, too.
An emotional highlight was Shine On You Crazy Diamond and its video tribute to former Pink Floyd frontman Syd Barrett, who died on July 7.
We would venture to say the two best concerts we have seen in Toronto this year were Waters' show last night and the first of the two shows by another Pink Floyd alumnus, David Gilmour, at Massey Hall last spring. It certainly makes you dream about one last Pink Floyd tour, considering Waters and Gilmour put aside their feud and reunited for the Live 8 extravaganza last year (as shown locally in horribly truncated form by CTV).
But savour what is, rather than pining for what isn't.
Gilmour purposely chose to play small venues, eschewing the luggage required for a Pink Floyd-style show. Waters obviously went the more elaborate route -- for example, the techno blasts at the end of the opening song last night were on par with what many acts use to close their concerts.
Just before the break, one of Pink Floyd's most recognizable props -- the giant inflated pink pig -- made its return, this time adorned with anti-war slogans such as, "Impeach Bush now" and "Don't get led to the slaughter, vote Nov. 7" (that's the date for mid-term elections in the U.S.).
During Waters' show on Monday in Detroit, the date on the pig incorrectly read Nov. 2. But Nov. 7 was inappropriate last night, seeing as Canada isn't voting for anything then.
Waters could have opted for Nov. 13, which is the date for municipal elections in Ontario. However, the only thing Toronto Mayor David Miller is leading "to the slaughter" is truckloads of our garbage.
Anyway, the Dark Side set (which had guitarist David Kilminster handling some of the vocal parts), essentially was flawless. Among the favourites chosen for the encore were Another Brick In The Wall and the clincher, Comfortably Numb.
By the end, the excited patrons may have been comfortable, but they were by no means numb.
Roger, you can come back any time. And see if you can get that Gilmour fella to tag along, too.