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Earls Court - 16/04/03


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well i just got back :) so here is the rundown - grade B++ awarded


so here i am at 12.30am typing merrily away to let you know how it all went - im tired so dont be suprised if the english isn't all it should be, but i will do my best to use paragraphs, just don't hold me to punctuation ;)


so, this evening i went to Earls Court to see Coldplay headline with Feeder as the support. I went with two friends and Vicky from this very board (it was great to meet up again) and her son & his father. we got there in reasonable time since we were running late! and got to our seats just before Feeder took to the stage.


well, i have to be honest as i was a bit disappointed. Feeder are a band i like a lot and i think their recent studio material is very promising. however on this outing i thought they were quite poor. they played a selection of hits, mostly the new material but they seemed rather half-hearted and the band setup and sound balance did not seem to do them justice, and the set was only about 7 songs long! - when Coldplay arived later and proved that acoustically they sounded far better perhaps the audio was set for them all along...


a quick break after Feeder and the lights dropped and Politik-intro kicked in. well as usual a cracking opening and the set seemed to speed by with my personal highlights being The Scientist, Poor Me and One I Love. in similar fashion to the Royal Albert Hall gig, by the close of the main set they had rocked the joint and the whole crowd were on their feet throught the encore. i can't deny it was a top set and one that seems to be coming very bread and butter to the lads and they sound all the better for it. with rowsing performances of Rush of Blood and Amsterdam sounding well tuned and nice additions. i just hope that the lads can change direction when they come out of this very long touring period they seem to have entered (i was shocked to see the 40-odd dates for mid 2002 to late 2003 in the tour booklet!) :shock: i really don't want to see them ok computer tour themselves to meltdown!


perhaps my only slight niggle was the venue itself. its not all bad for a stadium type size venue but it does create a feeling of overwhelming space that no matter how hard they try, the bands just can't quite fill, and hence the acoutics arn't really all that. our vantage point was reasonable and we had a nice view of the stage but god only knows how the poor people at the back of the stadium felt.


as a very exciting finish (although i had to cut it slightly short due to threats of having my car locked into the car park!), Vicky had very kindly managed to come by after-show passes to the VIP area. sadly i only had 40mins with them but in that time we managed to see Guy, Will and Johnny and i am hoping that they managed to see Chris too before leaving. other celebs included Kelly Jones of Stereophonics and Mark Owen (wherever i go, he always seems to be there :shock: )


so all in all the Coldplay set gets an A, the Feeder set gets a C, The venue gets a B, the great merchandise and after gig added brucy-bonus extras get a ++, so a B++ it is then (Hicksy's marking scheme TM, no rights reserved)


i hope you've had as much fun reading this as i have had typing it and thank you Vicky for adding to a very enjoyable evening ;) :D


night night peeps - sleep is much required :)


signing off.. Si :D

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as a few added extras that only came to mind when i was trying to get to sleep after the gig last night...


on the opening of politik Chris had a bit of a cough and a splutter which was a bit concerning but seemed to disappear quite quickly - hope he is ok tho! :shock:


on the closing song amsterdam, it originally began with the whole place in the dark and a spot light on Chris, but he seemed to bottle out, mutter something about hoping that this did not seem like they had sold out (didn't quite understand why) and then called for the house lights to be on - which made for a very strange atmosphere to what should be a very intimate song - anyhow it was good anyway, just a bit odd :)


oh and during daylight Chris made the comment that this was their homage to bross and he proceeded to work in the line "when will i, will i be famous?", which fitted perfectly! :shock: it was very very funny :D


chris also mentioned that this was the best day of their lives AGAIN. now don't get me wrong, Chris is a fantastic frontman full of charisma and i love the way he enthuses about everything they do but after seeing them twice in a month and listening to a selection of their live gigs from this year, just how many times can it be the best day of their lives? although i like to think that i do believe them when they feel that they have the best job in the world! ;) :D


oh and last but not least for the girls, Guy does look absolutely as fine in the close up flesh as on the stage (although this is purely from a man-o-man platonic stylistic observation u understand!), although he is quite ickle! Will comes across as a remarkably normal and unaffected person and Will looks every part the musician! and they all seemed very nice genuine people having a pretty damn good time making us all feel great :D


rockin! :D

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Feeder were half hearted?!? Did we watch the same set? Grant down the front of the stage working the crowd? Taka and Dean duelling guitars? Mark drumming better than I've ever seen him drum before? I think the fact that they were support took the pressue off, and they looked like they were enjoying it.

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Also a note that I did end up right up by the barriers at the front, so with Feeder not using the screens, if you weren't right up the front, you probably wouldn't have enjoyed the set as much. Such is the problem with big venues.

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Well, guys, at last I am allowed on the computer after George has been hogging it since we came back from London ... !


I dunno about Feeder - simply because I honestly haven't listened that closely to them on record. All I can tell you (from an uneducated point of view) is that I agree with Simon - I felt them to be very much the 'support band', somewhat lacking in charisma, and although the musicians themselves are, I'm sure, more than just beyond reproach, the overall impression was kinda bland. The lead singer (sorry, I don't know their names :? ) was tuneful but not at all strong. I couldn't make out a word they sang, and the sound quality was, well, rough.


Anyway, that's my opinion, but like I said, I am new to these guys. :shrug:


Then came Coldplay! I won't go over all the details again - Simon did a very fine job as usual! This is just my slant on it.


It was really great to meet up with Si again, as well as his friends Ian and Jodie, and we walked for what seemed like miles before finding our seats right at the top of the arena and to the far left of the stage.


Vertigo momentarily hit me as I looked down at the stage, far below, and the huge, almost empty arena, which soon filled up as the evening progressed. I could see Andy and George on the far side, in Block 1, row C, which was almost as close as you could get, seated. They were lucky - they had the guest tickets which Chris's dad and mum had very kindly arranged for us. However, I was absolutely delighted to sit with Si and his mates up in 'the Gods', where we had a brilliant, panoramic view of the whole arena.


I was not at all surprised by Chris's energy on stage - it is something we have all come to expect - but I was amazed by the passion of the other members of the band. How Will keeps on hitting those drums the way he does for an hour without faltering I just don't know, and quiet Jonny - rockin' with the best of them! And Guy (who is so skinny you wouldn't believe!) giving it his all with the others.


These guys really mean what they're doing.


The light show was totally brilliant. I've never seen anything like the way the lights were used as part of the songs - to enhance rather than embellish. In Yellow, yellow and orange lights were used (OK, pretty obvious). And in Daylight they brought in a kind of sunrise effect just at that glorious moment when the music delivers the dawn.


But the lasers in Clocks - well, honestly, it was stunning. When they brought them on, they switched on the smoke machines in pulses, just briefly, and from where we were, looking down, it was as if pools of water were suspended in mid air, the edges of which smouldered and smoked and glowed brightly as if they were burning. It was all moving, shimmering, but just in two planes - nothing 3D about it. We've all seen it on video - but my Goodness, when you're there it's something else!


As Simon said, I was really lucky and had been given After Show passes for 4 of us. So Ian and Jodie left, and Si, Andy, George and I went backstage (another long walk!) to the 'celeb' party. I expected a free bar, but no chance, and they were definitely charging over the odds, too. However, I didn't care a jot, and everyone seemed fairly pleasant and enjoying themselves, but I wanted to see some action. It can be very useful, having a teenage son - without seeming a complete anorak myself, I cheerfully followed George around the perimeter of the party, and as soon as he spotted someone interesting he'd stop and point them out to me! Me being a TOTAL HOPELESS CASE I didn't even recognise Will and Guy when they appeared through a doorway. But I didn't waste any time and actually INTERRUPTED Will in his conversation with another fellow with 'Hi! Will ! I'm Vicky, pleased to meet you' and shook his hand without any apology! I chatted with him for a bit, about nothing very much, except how he must have built his muscles up with all that frenetic drumming!


Then Si pointed out Guy, who was just behind me, talking to some other people. But something about him made me reluctant to approach - he seemed not quite so 'open' as Will, who simply beamed at me and was really, really sweet! Guy seemed rather more private - or something like that.


Then Si or George, I can't remember who, said 'look, there's Jonny' and pointed at these two guys, neither of which looked like the Jonny I knew from the photos!! So me being me, I went up to them both and said 'I'm told that one of you is Jonny!' and Jonny said, 'Yeah, that's me!', so I laughed and shook his hand and said 'Hi, I'm Vicky, I'm sorry about that!' but he just laughed too and it was OK! I tell you, Jonny is a really, really lovely guy. He (and Will) struck me as very open, normal people, not at all arrogant or 'up themselves', and happy to talk to me even though I was obviously struggling to find anything interesting to say to them! Jonny is very tall - I would guess about 6'3" or so, and he was wearing a baseball cap (I think that's why I didn't recognise him!). When George eventually asked for a photo of him with me, I said, 'you'll have to come down here a bit, or I'll have to get a chair' because I'm only 5'2"!!! He is lovely and has a very engaging laugh!


Did you all know that Guy and Jonny smoke? I held Jonny's cigarette while he found a pen to sign my CD insert, and I said he shouldn't be smoking! (Cheeky bitch! ) He just laughed and said he knew he shouldn't, and thanked me in a very gentlemanly fashion for holding his cigarette!


I was watching the three of them very closely, all the time I could see them, for the best part of 2 hours. It was very interesting. Will and Jonny are rather alike - both very open, normal guys. If you met them in the supermarket you would not think 'those guys are famous'! Guy, however, looks more the part. He is very skinny, and when he put his arm around me for the photo, and I slipped my arm around his waist in return, I was surprised to notice how thin he is, but how hard. There is just no fat on him, he's all muscle! He was very courteous about signing my CD insert - the damn pen just wouldn't work for him and he tried three times!!


But, sadly, Chris didn't appear. We left at something well after 12.30, and a lot of ppl had left before us. I'd really hoped to see him, but it just got too late and he was probably too tired.


But I have photos of me with Guy, Jonny and Will, and had a fantastic chat with Jonny about his university courses - did you know he studied Pure Maths and Astronomy at uni? And passed?! But he said he would rather have done Cosmology than Astronomy, and that Pure Maths was really, really hard.


I can't think anymore. When I can, I'll come back with more detail - if you're not bored already ..... :-D

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omg u got to meet them...if i saw them i wouldnt know what to do to start up a conversations....theyd probably think "get this wack job 14 year old out of here!" im soooooooo going to see them again and i soooo hope i can meet them then...maybe a smaller venue so it will be easier

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Hi All, i'm new around here. I've enjoyed reading this thread and agree with most of it too...I was there also, my 1st time seeing them and thought it was brilliant! The comments about the venue are spot on...but I got right down the front (standing) and really I wouldn't have known if we were all sittin' in a cave watchin' them 'cause I was so enraptured and captivated by them, esp. Chris who seems to go into some form of hyperaccelerated otherworldly possession at the piano :) I'd heard stories, and seen on tv the passion and energy but you really need to see it 1st hand and i'm so glad I was there, cant wait to see 'em again! Thanks for letting me relive it, it'll be playing in my head for some time to come ;)



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