Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Scorpions' Borobudur Temple show

German rock band, the Scorpions, has been one of my most favorite rock bands for so many years.

That is why I was rather surprised when I read on The Jakarta Globe that the band is planning to end its 45 years existence by holding a final show next month on the compound of the 9th century Borobudur Temple in Central Java.

Considering that international rock bands usually use high power equipments that would create abnormal vibrations in their shows, I hope that before the show is held there would be a study to find out whether or not such vibration would effect the temple's 9th century structure.

Scorpions Plan Last Sting in the Tail at Borobudur

Boyolali, Central Java. German hard-rocking hair band Scorpions announced they would play a concert as part of their farewell Sting in the Tail tour under the shadows of the stunning ninth-century Borobudur Temple. 

Agus Canny, marketing director of PT Taman Wisata Candi Borobudur, Prambanan and Ratu Boko, which manages the temple site, said the concert would be held in June of next year. 

“This concert will mark the end of the 45-year musical journey of the Scorpions. Their management agency has met us and expects the concert to be held in mid-June of 2011,” he told the Jakarta Globe on Monday. 

Two Scorpions representatives from Indonesia and two more from Germany visited Borobudur Temple last week to map out the concert details.

Chief executive of the temple’s management company, Purnomo Siswo Prasetyo, said that as a Unesco World Heritage Site, Borobudur Temple had hosted its share of big acts through years.

“However, the Scorpions concert certainly will be a great honor for us since the band is a legendary [act] and very popular throughout the world,” he said.

However, due to the fragile state of one of the world’s iconic Buddhist sites, Purnomo said his company would need to evaluate the potential for damage to the structure from heavy sound vibrations caused by the group’s driving rock.

But that is probably little more than a bump in the road for the group, which has sold more than 100 million records worldwide.

Agus said that the band behind rock classics “Rock You Like a Hurricane,” “Wind of Change” and “Still Loving You” chose Borobudur Temple because they were “blown away” by the monument built four centuries before Cambodia’s Angkor Wat.

Next year will ring in the 20th anniversary of the temple’s induction onto the Unesco list, as well as 100 years since the structure was first restored by Dutch expert Van Berg in 1911.

The Scorpions formed in Hanover during the 1960s and found commercial success nearly two decades later behind a battery of guitar-driven songs. The band’s 1989 album, “Crazy World,” was heavily influenced by the political upheaval band members witnessed in Eastern Europe after the collapse of the Berlin Wall.

They had earlier toured the Soviet Union, being only the second Western band to do so after Uriah Heap. In the critically panned 1996 release “Pure Instinct,” the group collaborated with Indonesian singer-songwriters Titiek Puspa and James F Sundah on the song “When You Came Into My Life.”

Photo: Courtesy of AceShowBiz


colson said...

Great idea if you have to make a living by being a member of Scorpions. The band's management obviously is an expert in publicity.

(Initially I was confused when I read the post; I thought it was about "The Scorpions" - to me more that's a more famous English band.)

H. Nizam said...

Hi Colson,
The band's management are indeed an expert in publicity, that's why they keep existing that long. If I am not wrong only the Rolling Stones can be longer.
Re: Post's title
As one of the big fan of the band I tend to call them that way.
The band's members are German and they reside there too.

umihoney said...

I believe the vibration would to some extent harm the complex fragile structures and whatever other artifacts therein. In any case enjoy the " swan song " of one of rock legend.

H. Nizam said...

International rock bands usually utilize very high power equipments in their open air concerts which can cause abnormal vibration like you said. A study must be done to check whether such vibration would be safe for the 9th century temple.

pj said...

Sounds like fun.

I don't think (as an engineer) that noise will be a problem although a study won't hurt for sure. There was a pretty major earthquake in Yogja a few years ago. I don't think Borobudur even noticed (pranbanan was damaged I think tho). With structures you need to watch for people dancing in rhythm - its caused a few balconies to come down.

It sounds like the ideal venue for a rock concert although I can't see there being space in the temple to set up the band. Maybe they will use the temple as a backdrop, kind of like at the ramayana performances at Pranbanan.

Are you plannning to go Harry?

H. Nizam said...

Hi Pj,
Although the Borobudur has not been effected by the major earthquake in Jogya but still it would be better to conduct the study.
Most probably the temple would be used as back drop like you said.
Unfortunately I won't be able to go to the concert.