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PEARL JAM, Manchester MEN 20 June 2012

Pearl Jam, photo by Steve Goudie

Having been together for more than 20 years Pearl Jam have a shed load of songs to dive into for tonight's performance.

Having survived the Grunge scene in the early 90s, the Seattle band have overcome many obstacles in these passing years from the madness of fan driving a car head on into Eddie Vedder's house, plus the fans crushed to death at Denmark's Roskilde festival, Pearl Jam are still going strong.

Coming onto the stage tonight with giant video screens behind showing black and white footage of the HD quality used here.

Pearl Jam, photo by Steve Goudie

They open with 'Metamorphosis 2' performed nearly in total darkness except for a single spotlight on Eddie Vedder the crowd singing every word with Eddie.

Let's be honest what other 47 year old do you know who crowd-surfs?

The band play a blistering 150-minute set covering most of their back catalogue, from 'Even Flow' to the band's beautiful, acoustic song 'Just Breath'

Then after a request from a fan on the front they play 'Come Back', and then the crowd go wild when Eddie leads the band into a cover of Neil Young's 'Rocking in The Free World' in which Vedder hits his tambourine so hard it smashes into tiny pieces...

Pearl Jam, photo by Steve Goudie

The highlight for me tonight was when Eddie showered himself in a bottle of wine which sent the crowd ballistic.

The mood changes when Eddie talks about the tragic events the previous weekend at the Radiohead gig, the crowd go silent then the band go into a very moving version of 'Alive'.

Pearl Jam, photo by Steve Goudie

Tonight the bond between Pearl Jam and the audience was extraordinary, more like an extended family.

Perhaps that explains the loyalty of their followers, some of whom travelled from as far away as Spain to see the band perform in Manchester tonight.

Review and photos by Steve Goudie

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