Here is an alternative band that has always known what they want to do and done it, with a unique sound that has stayed the same for decades. A band that even if you have seen them live already, the next time will never be the same. Pearl Jam is free to do what they want, and they don’t skip any chances to celebrate that freedom.
Eddie Vedder comes out on stage with a bottle of wine in one hand and a written letter in Swedish in the other, and he’s starts reading it. Despite Eddie‘s broken Swedish, his words are very well understood. He says he’s happy to finally be able to be back in Sweden and that this blue heaven he sees reminds him of freedom and then he toasts to freedom. Perhaps this speech was alluding also to the fact that the concert took place on the eve of the 4th of July, the ultimate freedom commemoration day in the US. But also for the fact that we were now free to gather and celebrate life and music at a festival together again. A toast to freedom!
The turn-up for Lollapalooza’s closing concert was unprecedented and definitely more than was expected, but nothing that the festival wasn’t ready for. Even after all these years of a long career and even though they don’t make so much noise apart from their own channels, Pearl Jam are still the living legends we all want to see.
Eddie Vedder quite wisely takes any opportunity to talk to the audience in the pauses that are taken by the band in between songs. He shares several anecdotes from previous visits to Sweden, he even mentions Sweden’s upcoming election and encourages people to vote. – “Vote for freedom of expression”, Vedder says. He also takes time to mention and thank all the artists that had played before them that day at Lollapalooza, and we must admit we like his engagement.
Hits such as Even Flow, Alive, Given to Fly, Black, Do The Evolution and even the most recent Superblood Wolfmoon, played by Vedder, Mike McCready, Jeff Ament, Matt Cameron and Stone Gossard brought the public to a climax.
Fun Fact: Vedder walked to the sides of the stage to get close to the audience in several occasions, and more than once he left his guitar behind and was playing the tambourine, which he gladly threw away into the public’s hands. He must have thrown at least three or four of them to some happy members of the audience to keep as cool souvenirs.
The band’s performance and the whole festival culminates with a cover of Neil Young‘s Rockin ‘in the free world. We truly dream of it and deserve this freedom for all, dear Pearl Jam, we truly do! Thank you for not losing that hope and thank you for infusing it to Lolla!