St. Stevenskerk, Nijmegen, The Netherlands Review by Remco Wetzels
Unlike the rest of the shows on this tour this was a solo acoustic set with John on guitar and piano, very much like the shows he did on his last tours. The venue was even more extraordinary though,as it was held in the beautiful Gothic cathedral in the centre of the Dutch town of Nijmegen. It was part of a series of 'Masterclass' concerts, sponsored by a Dutch beer brewer, as part of the festivities surrounding the yearly 'Vierdaagse' event, when hordes of people go for a 40 kilometer walk everyday for four days... in the burning sun.
The setlist was comparable to the solo shows we've seen him do in recent years, although standards like Paris 1919 and Fear were sadly missing. Some new songs were played, like Things, Wilderness Approaching and a wonderful acoustic guitar version of E is missing, John's final "nowhere" echoing through the church was absolutely stunning. Other remarkable songs were You Know More Than I Know, a cover of Nico's Frozen Warnings and a stunning version of the Drella song A Dream. Like every Cale show I've seen it was beautiful and of course the venue added much to the atmosphere but I did feel like his heart wasn't really in it this time. Maybe it was the serene setting preventing him from really giving it his all or maybe he's more into the band right now, whatever the reason, this wasn't the possessed man I saw on stage in Haarlem a few nights earlier, it was much more timid than I had come to expect from John Cale. He was in a more talkative mood than he was in Haarlem though, he even told the audience how he had been to Nijmegen when he was thirteen and playing viola with the Welsh Youth Orchestra. According to John they were invited for a reception at the medieval Town Hall next to the church, where he got his first taste of champagne, apparently the Town Hall was filled with thirteen year olds hopping around on champagne. All in all it was good show but I'd rather see him come back to Holland with his band.