Martin and James – Centralstation Darmstadt, February 5th, 2012
Walking briskly through –18 degree weather at four in the morning after barely two hours of sleep is a sure way to wake up. A beautiful full moon greeted me on my way to the train station, but it was way too cold to really admire it. The first train trip of today is too short to go back to sleep so I’m keeping myself busy with memories from last night’s gig. As James put it “This is the best one we’ve played so far.” I whole-heartedly agree. On the way back and at our hotel after the gig, R. and I were lost for words to describe all the wonders and magic of the concert we had just seen. It was one of those nights where everything fit: the audience, the atmosphere, the energy coming from the guys on stage, the brilliant sound and the great lighting. All things were perfect.
Darmstadt was colder than any of the other cities we had visited this week and none of us was looking forward to waiting outside. What a pleasant surprise to arrive at the venue and find that it was possible to wait inside and the waiting area even had a heater. B., N., L. and her friend were already there when we arrived so we got in line with them. R. left and got us some food and we all passed the time chatting and watching and listening to the guys soundchecking through the glass doors. It made me happy when I spotted Dan Dietrich, who had supported them in Cologne. I had loved his short set there and had been hoping to hear him again.
Getting in went smoothly and we got a great spot front row center. I immediately noticed how good the lighting was – wonderful for taking pictures. The sound was also the best I had heard so far and the audience much more enthusiastic than the previous night.
Since Dan Dietrich was there as an additional local support, the whole gig started early. He played a beautiful set of four or five songs and the crowd really loved it. They were friendly and cheering him on. The place was packed, but it didn’t feel as crowded as Cologne and the air was much better as well.
Jim Kroft was next, once again with Jonas Lieber on second guitar and singing harmonies. They had a lot of fans there this time and fed on their reaction. I have the feeling they are getting better every night and thoroughly enjoyed their set. I can sing along to some of their songs already, even though I have yet to listen to the album. It was really amazing. So far ‘Falling Apart’ and ‘The Jailer’ are my favorites. They also played ‘Canary in a Coalmine’, a request just for N. and the song was beautiful. The audience loved it and sowed their support.
If I’m born too late
The Great Doomsday Story
Memoires from the Afterlife
Guess that’s what the Gods said
Canary in the Coalmine
The wait for Martin and James was not long and again they were greeted with loud cheers. As opposed to Cologne, where the audience seemed to be there just to party, this audience was capable of doing both: partying as well as listening. The responses to everything that happened on stages was just right – silence when needed, laughter when a joke was told and all around friendly support and loud cheering between songs. The clapping and sing along during songs was always to the point as well and so good that James commented on having some serious competition in singing.
They started with ‘She’s light guiding’ again and the spark was there from the very first note they played. ‘Turn it up’ already had me singing at the top of my lungs and any tiredness I might have felt before the gig just left me instantly. There were happy faces everywhere and I knew dragging R: to this last gig had been the right thing to do. She was enjoying it as much as I was and I know the smile on my face was huge. ‘Maybe it’s time’ was exceptional this night, it really felt as if all the songs were. The guys gave the performance of a lifetime, feeding on all the positive energy and feedback they got from the audience. It sounded as if they were singing along to every song.
‘Wheels’ and ‘Wrong Directions’ were amazing and ‘One Way forward’ got a great reaction too. This was the perfect gig to test new songs. They really didn’t need to ask if we liked them or if they should put them on the new album. ‘You’re a window’ had everyone clapping and ‘I was blind’ finally gave us a chance to catch our breath and listen for a change before ‘Bad Dream’ and ‘Live Wires’ had everyone clapping singing and screaming once again.
‘Love’s not a fight’ almost killed me – I could feel the tears in the corner of my eye, waiting to fall. ‘Cynical Skin’ and ‘Hard to cry’ I like better every time I hear them and I even manage to sing along a few lines by now. ‘Little bits of light’ brought familiar sounds and the audience once again switched from listening to singing and back for more new songs.
I still cannot decide which one I like best. They are all amazing and I have a different favorite every night. This time, it was ‘Life’s a show’. ’The Rope’ was also very beautiful once more.
A great rendition of ‘All over the news’ and a powerful and long version of ‘Crashing into love’ took us to the encores. I sang along so loud I could feel my voice leaving me. The noise when the guys left the stage was deafening. They answered our call for more right away. James pointed out those who have been following them on this tour, saying how they see the same faces every night and thanking us for coming. He joked that we were not stalking them yet.
The beautiful ‘Somebody’ and ‘I have to fall’ closed the show, the latter once again mixed with ‘Twist and Shout’ and ‘You shook me all night long’ and everyone guesting on stage. It was explosive and elating. I had been hoping to hear ‘With you’ one more time, but they left it out again. Nothing could spoil such an amazing show though. When it was over, R. and I looked at each other, completely happy and lost for words.
None of us wanted to leave. We hung out for ages, chatting with Dan, Jim and the guys, joking, laughing a lot. I asked James to clarify “that stalking thing” and tell me if he wanted more stalking or less. He just laughed about it. I also complimented Martin on his leather jacket, which looked really nice. He claimed that he wanted to look cool. Success I’d say. 🙂
They were both in such a great mood, had clearly loved the gig and chatted away happily.
What a perfect tour finish for R. and very special mid-tour gig for me.
Four concerts down, three to go. Next stop: Dortmund
She’s light guiding
Turn it up
Maybe it’s time
One way forward
You’re a window
I was blind
Love’s not a Fight
Hard to cry
Little bits of Light
Life’s a Show
Allover the News
Crashing into Love
I have to fall/Twist and Shout/ You shook me all night long