Sunday night I went to see and hear Leonard Cohen live at Globen. My first concert in over 3 years. I came home with mixed impressions.

On the plus side, Cohen is in great shape despite his age and he sounds as good live as he does on any of his albums – and he really gave all he had. (As he said himself, this might be the last time he is here.) Over 3 hours on stage at the age of 76 is quite impressive. It was nice to see him live, and to spend several hours just listening to music, which is not something I do often nowadays. And the sound was good, relatively well balanced between vocals and backing music, and not too loud.

On the minus side, Globen just isn’t a good venue for a concert (except for loud rock music). It’s a huge hall with seats almost all the way around. All music is piped through a bunch of large loudspeakers, which means there is, effectively, no stereo sound. The sound will inevitably be somewhat flat and come from a point in front of you.

Another slight minus was the lighting. As with the sound, the visuals are all delivered to you via screens. (From our seats I could just about identify Leonard Cohen on the scene, but not see much more.) In this case the scene was too dimly lit, so often half of whatever was shown on screen was in a dark shadow.