Mana 2007 Concert Review – New York

21 03 2007

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Mana is my favorite studio and live band. As such, I hold them to a higher standard than other bands. Their performance was a bit lacking in some aspects. I had fun because I had great company and well… also because Mana is Mana. Mana is like Pizza, even when it’s bad it’s good. So here it goes… I tell it like I see it.

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The length of the concert left a lot to be desired as well. In other years, the show started promptly at 8:00pm and it finished at 11:00pm. 3 hours!!! This year, the ticket said 7:00pm but the show did not start until 8:30pm. Late! And it ended early, at 10:45pm. 2 hours and 15 minutes only!!! They could have performed five or six songs in these 45 minutes. What happened to “Corazon Espinado”, “Te Llevare Al Cielo”, and “Sabanas Frias”?

The beginning shows a short clip of Mexican immigrants jumping over the border wall while a Border Patrol chopper flies low over their heads. Touching. See for yourself.

The “Amar es Combatir” concert at the Madison Square garden lacked the spontaneity and emotional connection from other years. The song roster included their all-time bests as well as a few of the most recent songs. No real complaints about the latter. The songs “Labios Compartidos”, “Manda Una Sen~a” and “Bendita Sea Tu Luz” were powerful and solid versions.

The former, their all-time hits, failed to make a connection with the crowd. For example, in one of their best songs is “Vivir sin Aire”, Sergio Vallin (guitar player) traded the acoustic guitar for an electric. This is supposed to be a warm song, in part because the acoustic guitar phrases compliment the melody. But this time around, Sergio cut back on his guitar parts. Frankly, he played the song as I would have played it (and I’m not that good). Here is their 2007 version:

It is sad because he is probably the most versatile and original guitarist in Latin America (and maybe even North America). He is capable of giving Mana an extra dimension, which is the reason why Mana’s sound improved so much in 1995 when he joined Mana in the “Cuando Los Angeles Lloran” album. Alex forgot to play the bongos as well on this piece, and therefore Fher’s harmonica really sounds out of place, like it doesn’t belong in that song. I know they tried to make the tour more representative of their new rock sound – electric guitars and catchy rock rhythms. In such case, they should have given more thought on how to adapt the songs so that they fit their new scheme. If the acoustic guitars and the bongos had to be scrapped, maybe the harmonica should have been replaced by a pipe organ or an accordion. That would have been eclectic! Instead it seems like they stripped their songs down in five minutes. Their “Unplugged” album was a master piece because those songs had a spirit of their own. The “Amar Es Combatir” versions sound like they are missing musicians.

Then again… what do I know? Maybe I’m just being uptight. Whatever.

Here is the song roster for the Thursday New York Concert, March 15th 2007.

  • Dejame Entrar
  • Dame Una Sen~al
  • Labios Compartidos
  • Bendita Sea Tu Luz
  • Vivir Sin Aire
  • Falta Amor
  • Donde Jugaran Los Nin~os
  • Mariposa Traicionera
  • Eres Mi Religion
  • Te Llore Como un Rio
  • Me Canse De Rogarte
  • Me Vale
  • Se Me Olvido Otra Vez
  • Perdido En Barco
  • El Rey
  • No Ha Parado De Llover
  • El Muelle de San Blas
  • Rayando El Sol

For “Eres Mi Religion”, “Te Llore Como Un Rio and “Me Canse de Rogarte”, a red sofa was pulled into stage and girl from the first row was invited on stage. Fher, accompanied by Sergio, played for her while she sat inches from them. Nice touch… but they already did that back in 2003. A bit passe.

They also used fire flames for some of their songs. Unnecessary. Who are they? GunsNRoses?

There I go again… Let me relax a bit. It’s all good because they did pull off a couple of weird stunts. They put on skull masks while they played “Donde Jugaran Los Nin~os”.

Alex put a great show with drum solo that lasted a few minutes. It was good, but in other years he has played his solo with a latin syncopated feel. It was better.

I did enjoy the show. Make no mistake!!! They are the best Latin American rock band!!! Fher is a superb song writer and singer. His voice has matured into a raspy howl of emotion. Alex is the best drummer of his generation. Sergio is the most well-rounded guitar player (he rivals ANY guitar player in ANY style; Santana is very respectfully of Sergio’s work, i.e. Corazon Espinado). Juan is an elegant bass player that likes to stay low key but he can really change gears with Alex. Juan’s bass is a perfect transition between Alex’s complex rhythms and Fher’s and Sergio’s harmonious musical phases.

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6 responses

4 04 2007
Pablo Misael Nah

All of your vidoe clips were enjoyable to look at. Since the time i was born iv’e been watching and finding everywhere all of your songs. you are a good mexican band and i know that in the future you’ll take more songs out so the fans like me can enjoy. Your songs have helped me to relieve a lot when i was stresed. What Iwould do when I had problems I didn’t know rather than doing a mistake i’d better sit down and listen to your music. Really guys your music songs are really tough to listen. bye don’t forget me ihope that you emailback. I have tons of things for you too hear but if i was to continue I would never stop. So it is time to say goodbye. May God be with you always.oh! This person who is emailing is way from a little village called (Kanlum) which means
sacred red soil. (Kan)meaning red and (lum) meaning soil. Bye bye hugs to you all see you later.

7 10 2007
Oscar

Hey how’s it goin’…..I’m a huge fan too. I was wonderin’, is it just me or was their sound system also not as powerful as in the Revolucion de amor tour. Maybe it’s just because I was on the floor at that tour and this tour I was in the lower level tier. Cause’ I remember their sound in the Revolucion de Amor Concert…my nose was tickling and the drums felt like they were pounding on my chest. It was great

22 01 2008
Ana Luisa Acosta

Oh my you can not imagen how cool it was to see this all over again. When i seen them at the Staples Center in La it was the best every year i see them the show gets better and better every time. Mana is the best

25 08 2008
marco

Sergio didnt join the band in 97. he joined in late 94 early 95 and thats when cuando los angeles lloran was released! Aside from that i went to 3 of their concerts for this tour and i enjoyed everyone of them. the ones i went to had the crowd singing loud and there was definately intimate moments also they changed their song line up a few times. at the beginning of the tour they didnt play corazon espinado but on the last one i saw they did..theres just not that much time to play all the great songs.

30 06 2011
Jess

Mana! Ohhh….so excited to see them on July 7th in Miami. This place has really good tickets if anyone is looking….http://tinyurl.com/3rm366u

28 09 2014
driving music

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