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Blog: Oooh, MAGIC!

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We went to the ROYAL ALBERT HALL the other night, to see The Finn Brothers. Myself and the Water In My Hot Water Bottle went with a couple of friends who are BIG FANS, and once we managed to find the venue (you'd think a place that BIG would be easy to get to - but NOT SO) it was MOST IMPRESSIVE. I've been inside once before when I'd been to see John Otway, but that time I'd been RATHER incapacitated by DRINK so don't remember much of it. We'd actually turned up LATE, and had EMERGED just as the first half of the set was finishing, to find ourselves about three rows from the front in a MASSIVE ARENA, with everyone watching Nigel From Eastenders presenting Otway with a BOUQUET.

But i digress. THIS time that didn't happen - there was a Singer Songwriter woman on first, who, as often happens in these cases, had a LOVELY voice but after three songs i think we had all heard enough of it, as her songs were a bit dull. The Finn Brothers came on shortly afterwards dressed as a PANTOMIME HORSE, which was really cool, and then did a lovely song off their first album. They seemed a bit PERTURBED, which they would be - if Tim had hung HIMSELF the day before one of MY gigs I am sure i would at least have been put off my beer for a bit, possibly even until after I'd finished playing - and I think it would have been better if I'd known more of the songs, but it all ambled along very pleasantly. At the end they KICKED OUT their bass player so the Crowded House bass player could come on for the encore (which i thought was a bit mean, but nobody else seemed to mind), and he started talking into the AUDITORIUM, and it was NOTED that he was pretty audible, so then Neil (i think) got the PA turned off and started singing a song COMPLETELY acoustically... and OOH! it was "Don't Dream It's Over" and OOH it was BLOODY MAGIC! He did the first verse like that and it was quite SWEET because the audience was full of people who go to big gigs and try to clap along with everything, but they COULDN'T this time as it would completely drown him out, and you could HEAR people fidgeting. Then it got to the chorus and everyone sang along - it was STUNNING, it was the most IN TUNE and LOVELY audience singalong i have ever heard, possibly because they had to stay quiet, but goodness me it was FANTASTIC.

Then they turned the PA and ROCKED some more, which lost it a bit for me, but OH MY what a lovely little moment that had been. After that i turned to ADMIRING the venue, which is pretty spectacular - we were up top near the back, but it felt like you were really CLOSE - and also enjoyed watching a bunch of lads who had REALLY OBVIOUSLY never been to a gig before, and who thought that it would be like ON THE TELLY, so leapt up and down, shouted to the band (again, from near the top right at the back) and got upset because there wasn't a mexican wave or a moshpit. Bless.

Also, MEMO TO SELF: looking down you could see the screen lights of people playing with their mobile phones - when the Validators play venues like this (surely soon?) we MUST remember to get everyone to set their ringtones off all at the same time. It'll be GRATE!

posted 31/3/2005 by MJ Hibbett

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