Poets of the Fall – O2 Club Academy, Manchester; October 14th, 2018
The Poets of the Fall gig in Manchester can be summed up with many superlatives. It was the last show of the UK tour, it started the latest, the walk from our hotel to the venue was the longest, getting tickets and getting my photo pass was the most stressful, the security was the sweetest, the meet & greet the funniest and the VIP acoustic songs the best so far. All in all it was the perfect experience to end the UK tour with and left me wishing for more. Soon…
I had been hoping to see a little bit of Nottingham in the morning, but after a good night’s sleep the city greeted us with heavy rain so we opted for breakfast at a nice cafe instead. They served good tea and the best porridge I have ever eaten plus great conversations with A. and L. that lasted so long we almost missed our train to Manchester. It was time for goodbyes, because A. was flying home and only L. and I were left behind for the last gig. As travel on this trip seems to be difficult we stopped just outside of Nottingham with engine troubles and were delayed quite a bit. We made it though and after a walk in the rain we found our hotel too. Luckily it stopped raining before we had to leave again.
We got to the venue early, inquired at the box office about our tickets and learned that we would not get them before 6. But weren’t the doors supposed to open at 6. They didn’t even understand what the problem was about not being able to queue for the doors and tickets at the same time. Luckily hat was solved when we learned VIP entry was at 6:30. Phew! We went for dinner and saw a few familiar faces on the way back. Eventually a super nice security guard gathered all of us and told us where to line up. Then I had trouble with my photo pass, because “we do not get them until the doors open for the regular ticket holders and you can’t take your camera down (to the venue) before you have it” – WTF??? It was annoying, but super nice security guard took care of it. <3
Once downstairs I was the first in line with L. right behind me and we walked towards the guys seated behind a long table. I’d been wondering about the new intro and asked Captain how “Whatever you do, don’t scream!” came about. To my surprise, he pointed to Marko and said “ask him.” So I did and got a wonderfully theatrical show and tell explanation where Marko mimed everything to underline his words. <3 I have no clue how to describe it to you in a way you can imagine it so let’s just say it involved scared people and zombies and was hilarious. Feel free to ask me about it, I’ll do my best to show you what it looked like. 😉 Chatted a bit with everyone else too, then moved on and started joking with Tiia and the crew which ended in having them sign my autograph card and taking group pictures with them.
We secured our spots at the front and waited. There were over 40 people with VIP tickets so it was going to be a while. Finally Ben gathered us for the group picture, where I got to lean on to Captain’s shoulder’s. It took a while until everyone was standing in a spot they could be seen so it was enough time to crack a few more jokes. 😉 When that was done, we gathered in front of the stage. G., whom I’d met in Bristol stayed with L. and me. I took a deep breath, smiled and waited, wondering what they would play this time.
In my head is a long list of songs that I would love to hear – some because they have never been played, some because I have never heard them live and some just because they are dear to me and I would love to hear them again. This night, I was able to check off one song on that list: the first one they played for the VIPs was ‘Fragile’. It was funny too, because Marko told us Jari claimed to never have heard it and Jari commented “There are no drums on it!”, consequently he played a shaker (or at least I think that’s what this Instrument is called). The song itself was beautiful. I’d been hoping to hear it live since 2008, but missed the only concert where it was played back on the Revolution Roulette tour. I was happy already and then they gave us ‘Children of the Sun’ as well in an acoustic version. Perfect! For ‘Fragile’ alone it was worth paying the extra money for the VIP ticket. This was exactly what I had been hoping for. <3 So far the songs have been getting more interesting for me since the first gig. Generally speaking they seem to aim for one rare and one more popular song each night. That is a good combination in my opinion.
We passed the waiting time talking and at 8 pm Blackout Problems took the stage. I’d been looking forwards to seeing them again and was a little sad to know it was their last show. Despite being from Germany they will not support Poets of the Fall on that tour, because they have their own tour going on then. I’d talked to them after one of the other gigs and learned they were gonna play in Dortmund in November. When I mentioned how many other gigs I see they answered “Hey, music is love!” – exactly. I will see what I can do about that November gig.
First though it was time to enjoy their set and I did. When the singer hopped off the stage to go into the audience, he did so by my side and used my shoulder for support when he climbed over the barrier. Fine with me. 🙂 I jumped when they asked us to, sang along as best as I could and really had a blast. L. and I had a funny moment with the key line in Rome that we completely misunderstood. I swear we both heard “I’d rather fucking bang with you”, which seemed weird, but OK, artistic freedom and all. It actually is “I’d rob a fucking bank with you!” 😀 We did not realized that until a day after the concert though. Maybe it’s time to get our minds out of the gutter? 😉 Either way, we had fun and time passed quickly.
According to schedule the Poets were going to start at 9:30, but the stage was set and I could not believe they’d make us wait that long. They didn’t! At 9 the room went quiet and the intro started and of course we all screamed when they walked out. The story Marko had told me about the intro was still making me smile. He also mentioned he really wanted to use that line in a song and Captain said he had a song idea that fit, so maybe we will get to hear that one day. 🙂
The concert rocked from the start. Already during ‘Dreaming wide awake’, Olli was visiting Captain behind the keyboards and then flying deadly high indeed. It never ceases to amaze me how high he can jump! By now I had gotten used to this order of songs and loved having a song to move to from the start. 😀 ‘Dancing on broken Glass’ still feels a bit too pop for me , but I’m really loving the lyrics. It’s nice seeing the guys perform the new songs. They looks so much into it. Generally it seems like they love the new set, the new tour. They always look happy. While they were playing, Jani walked over to Marko, resting his head on his shoulder for a while. I love those sweet moments. <3 There were many, like Olli and Captain raising their hands together in tune with ‘False Kings’ or Marko visiting Jaska and putting his arm around his shoulders and singing to him, then walking over to the other side of the stage, listening to Olli and then leaning over to blow into his ear. 😀 He seemed to have a thing for Olli that night, because during ‘Temple of Thought’ he was back with his hands raised by the side of Olli’s head. No idea what it meant, but it certainly made me laugh.
For ‘Rogue’ we saw a lot of pointing of guitars and bass, Captain leaning back behind the keyboards, Jari going wild behind the drums and Olli air playing the whammy bar on Jaska’s guitar. 🙂 As the band got ready for ‘Standstill’ I snapped a picture of Jaska posing or Tiia, then was too busy listening to that beautiful tune to take more pictures. The words to ‘Brighter than the Sun’ had finally come back to me the previous night so I could sing along and I even had enough space to dance a little. Before the concert L. and I had talked about having a bass solo, but neither of us could remember which song it was. Now it happened, and she motioned to me “there! this!”. Yeah, it rocks and like most nights Marko sat down next to Jani to watch him play. <3 By the end of the song, he asked us to sing and Jaska as well as Captain helped showing us when it was our turn, arms raised.
Already it was time for ‘Cradled in Love’ and Jari handed Jaska a drumstick so he could play the cymbals. I just wished the lights were a bit better so I could take pictures. There was a lot of backlighting that night just like in Glasgow, so I captured a lot of “shadow play” and silhouettes. With ‘My Dark Disquiet’ we could practice our dance moves again. L. did it really well, so Olli and Jaska were watching her, totally loving it. 🙂 ‘War’ meant singing along at the top of our lungs and being fully into the song for both L. and me. For different reasons that song is truly special to us. More dancing happened for Daze’ with the guys asking everyone to clap along and ‘sleep’ gave us a break before the encores rocked the house.
I was going crazy for ‘Locking up the Sun’ as I do, at the same time trying to watch the guys and taking pictures. 😀 ‘The Sweet Escape’ was beautiful as every night. This song has so many lines that I love. <3 Then it was party time again for ‘Lift’. It was the last chance after all (for that night) before the concert wound down with ‘Carnival of Rust’ and ‘Choir of Cicadas’. It was the end of the tour and I did not want this concert to be over. Looking around, everyone seemed to love it just as much as I did and I’m sure they would have agreed to hear more. The tour had been wonderful so far and this was a perfect last gig. The guys seemed happy too. There was a lot of hugging going on at the end. The crew, namely Glen and Ben got hugged too. After the stage selfie the guys waved goodbye and since I bowed to them in thanks, Olli bowed back to me. <3
We hung out for a while and chatted, I said goodbye to Tiia, Satu and many of the people I had met on the road. This tour was fun, but now it was time to leave. L. and I had a long walk back to our hotel and stayed up a few more hours reminiscing, agreeing it had been a great night. I was already looking forward to the shows yet to come. 🙂
Dreaming Wide Awake
Dancing on Broken Glass
Temple of Thought
Brighter Than the Sun
Cradled in Love
My Dark Disquiet
Locking Up the Sun
The Sweet Escape
Carnival of Rust
Choir of Cicadas
Ultraviolet Tour 2018: Five shows down, seven to go