Regina Spektor “Serpentine Sessions” @ Hyde Park 29th June 2009

The very first Serpentine Sessions which took place in a enclosed area of Hyde Park kicked off with Regina Spektor. Regina gave a brilliant performance at Glastonbury two day prior. After her on BBC2 when they were covering Glastonbury it just wetted my appetite to see her. Well I got to Hyde Park around 3.15pm and I went over to the main entrance only to be told 45minutes later I was in the wrong place. Well I went to the entrance and it was the one that I first saw but it said VIP Guests when I first looked there at 3.15. That is why I turned and went to the main entrance. Well when I got to the correct entrance they were setting up. Overall it was poorly organised as this should have been set up hours before. They decided to put out the barriers about 30minutes before the doors opened. There was already a lot of people just sitting around the entrance and when doors opened I was the third person to go in. Well when I got my ticket scanned I ran to the big top and took my place at the front. It was a good spot as I was directly in front of Regina’s piano. There was a massive gap where security and the photographers would be. Well it was 90minutes before the first person came onstage at 7.30pm. It was quite disappointing as I would of liked to have seen Blue Roses who were performing on the bandstand. Well it kicked off in the Big Top at 7.30pm with Reggie Watts. Now Reggie grew on me. I really enjoyed the set. Now Reggie is a singer/ beat boxer. He is someone I would definitely look on the internet to find more material by him. Reggie finished his set at 7.55pm.

At 8.40pm it was time for the headline act to take the stage. The atmosphere was electric and buzzing. Regina was taken aback with the audience reaction to her coming on the stage. Now what I was about to see was a magical set by Regina which was over in a flash. I am glad that I was at the front because I had a amazing view. Now this set wasn’t just focused on the new songs. Yes Regina did sing 9 new tracks from her album Far but she sung 11 old tracks. Well when Regina came on the photographers were taken to on side, Regina was taken aback with the audience reaction and she just smiled. Well Regina went into her first song Folding Chair. Now this is taken from the new album. This was a good song to open as it has a good melody to it. It is definitely up tempo and is up there in my favourite tracks from the new album. The lyrics and melody blend well and that is why I like it because it is a catchy song. The photographers then came back for the next song. Time Is All Around which appears as a bonus track on Far is next. This song has a steady pace and has some good catchy lines. Eet is next. This is a slow ballad. I really like this it starts off really well with Regina saying “It’s like forgetting the words to your favourite song”. Well this is a beautiful song and powerful too. The Calculation is next when it starts there is a beat to it but it sounds that there is a reggae vibe to the song. Well this song is a catchy song with a brilliant chorus. It is up tempo and I would say it is my favourite song off the album. Well the photographers had their three songs and were ushered out of the big top. Machine is next it starts off heavy and has some good lyrics and a good chorus. I think of the song being the

Après Moi of Regina’s new album. The next song gets a really good reception. This being On The Radio from Begin To Hope you have people clapping along to the song. This is a brilliant song and it is amazing from beginning to end. It has a really good beat to it plus good lyrics. It is back to the new album now and the track that is sung is One More Time With Feeling. Whenever I hear the title the musical episode of Buffy The Vampire Slayer springs to mind at that was called Once More With Feeling. Well the song is a strong slow ballad. There is not a single bad track on Regina’s new album. As soon as Regina starts playing Blue Lips there are screams in the crowd. The audience sing along to the words of this song. Riot Gear follows on and it is a song I would like to hear again as it was only release as a itunes bonus track. It was a really good song. Regina’s latest offering Laughing With is next. It is a nice song and it delivers a strong message. Regina sings about God and no one laughs at him. A track which has not appeared on any albums called Bobbin’ For Apples is next. For this song Regina takes to the guitar. The crowd is going wild. Then when Regina starts singing there is silence as this song is a obscure one. That Time is next I like this song it is catchy has good lyrics and melody from Regina’s guitar. The crowd clap along and sing along. It has really good verses and according to the song Tangerines are cheap and juicy. Continuing on with the old songs is another off of Begin To Hope. For Après Moi Regina heads back to her piano. It is a heavy and dark song. The fact she sings this song in French, Russian and English is absolutely mesmerising. Poor Little Rich Boy which is taken from Soviet Kitsch is next. Regina has a wooden chair next to her and she multi tasks by hitting a drumstick on this chair and playing the piano at the same time. It is so amazing to hear old songs by Regina getting played live. The final two songs on the night are new songs. Now Wallet is a nice steady song which starts off with the line “I found a Wallet”. Now this song tells a story and that is one of the reasons why I like the song. Man Of A Thousand Faces is the closer. It starts of gentle and slowed pace but when it progresses that is when it changes to a stronger song. When it is over Regina gets off the piano and bows to the crowd. Everyone is chanting more and when Regina does return it was going to be one amazing encore. The encore was 4 tracks and not a new song in site. First was Samson which was a crowd pleaser as people wanted this song sung earlier. It is a strong, powerful, slow song. Everyone sings along to this song. Us is next and the violinists come back onstage. This song also gets a good reception too and everyone is singing along to the song. Ghost Of Corporate Future is next the melody reminds me of something else I cant think of what. Well the song itself is a steady song and it was taken off the album Soviet Kitsch. The final song on the night was one that I was anticipating and I wanted to hear. The drummer returns to the stage. Regina introduces us to the band again and then they start playing Fidelity. This song is catchy and in your face. This was the song that made me listen to Regina all those years ago. I am surprised it never broke into the top 40 as it is a brilliant song. When Regina keeps sing Better during Fidelity there is a slight English accent.

SET LIST

Folding Chair
Time Is All Around
Eet
The Calculation
Machine
On The Radio
One More Time With Feeling
Blue Lips
Riot Gear
Laughing With
Bobbin’ For Apples
That Time
Après Moi
Poor Little Rich Boy
Wallet
Man Of A Thousand Faces

ENCORE

Samson
Us
Ghost Of Corporate Future
Fidelity

OVERALL – This gig was amazing I would definitely see Regina live again. Her performance was absolutely mesmerising and magical. It was gone in a flash. Regina revelled in the audience reaction. I was glad Regina did not just focus on the new material. At the end of the set Regina sung 11 old songs and 9 new ones. When the night ended I was not disappointed.

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