Whilst it's great that Brian and Roger still feel the need to tour and keep the music alive and of the moment, I have to admit to thanking God that I haven't bothered to go out on a highly expensive limb and buy any tickets to see shows this time around.
From what I've seen and heard so far - and I'm prepared to give them a little more time in terms of revving up the old engines - the shows display a worrying lack of ambition and have substituted danger and excitement for an iPod Shuffle.
We may, currently, be seeing a series of warm-up shows which will lead them in to the real thing of a UK tour. An exercise in making sure that they know their moves and hit the old routines before they stretch themselves into new and more exciting material as the tour progresses. At the moment, I'd be FAR happier listening to the band's material on the retrospective live downloads than what I've always believed to be a truly unique experience in terms of hearing live music. I suppose it's entirely possible that the band feel it is "safer" and "better" to use the continential European audiences in this way as the UK will be (or, I would *hope* will be) more demanding and less accepting of the "same-old same-old" material.
SURELY..........as a promotional tool for the album, this tour would be expected to showcase the best material from the band's new album. Is what Europe is getting an admission that the band don't believe there is sufficiently *good* material on the album to warrant inclusion ahead of AKOM, GaGa and IWTBF etc? Could the album, then, have been nothing more than an agreement by Roger & Brian (with Paul) to fulfill an outstanding contractual agreement?