Poets of the Fall – The Academy, Dublin; May 5th, 2022
Seeing Poets of the Fall live again after more than two years was a real emotional roller-coaster, but left me very happy in the end. I had felt somewhat abandoned by them during the pandemic years and didn’t know if their magic would still work for me. I was also very afraid that I would not like their latest album, but I knew I’d regret it if I didn’t give them a chance and go to a few shows to see what would happen. It turned out to be the right decision and I left with my faith restored.
I’d waited until late to buy tickets for the Ireland/UK tour, but eventually I did and was looking forward to the shows. Since the Ghostlight album came out less than a week before the first show, I decided I would discover the new songs live and not listen to them beforehand. Being on tour helped with not getting tempted.
Having repacked the previous day and with a flight around noon, travel was rather relaxed. Got to Dublin, had a nice room and good weather and even got some food into me before I got in line. Walked by the venue around 4:30 and saw one person standing there. Returned about an hour later and was 18th in lin. Not a bad start. With the VIP tickets gone this tour, there was finally a chance to get to the front again. Everything went smoothly and I ended up front row on Ollie’s side. 😀 There was a setlist and it was impossible not to look – I counted 3 song titles I didn’t know plus the single.
The venue was small and packed, with a low ceiling. I kept my mask on, not feeling safe without it. The other concerts this year had shown me, that I’d be able to have fun anyway. Still, I was a bit nervous and felt I needed to find my footing again with the guys. First though, there was some hair metal band to listen to. I can’t remember their name and found them otherwise forgettable too. Not bad, just not the music I wanted to listen to that night and not a good match for Poets. They played a good set though and did their best to get the audience going so props for that. 😉
Once the stage was changed, I was excited and anxious in equal parts, slightly worried that their shows would not do it for me any more. When the lights went out I screamed, just like I had always done, trying to remember how to do this. The intro started and it took a while before they walked on stage one by one. We cheered and I wondered what it was like for them after such a long absence. Did they feel rusty? Would they talk about it?
Marko greeted us briefly and they launched into ‘Requiem for my Harlequin’, some looking at us, some concentrating on playing and it felt familiar if not quite right just yet. I discovered the advantage of a mask was that they could not see I didn’t know the lyrics. 😉 The song sounded brilliant and when they continued straight into ‘Dreaming wide awake’ I felt the old pull and started remembering. Before I knew it I saw Ollie jump high, was head-banging in tune with the music and pointing at each one of them in turn. We cheered loudly and things were falling into place.
Marko never talked about the two missing years, just mentioned that it was good to be back. It was good to have them back too. ‘Temple of Thought’ was beautiful as always and slowly the band getting back to their old moves and old groove. They were sounding as good as ever. ‘Rougue’ had them all showing off their skills and hell yes, these guys still knew how to play. Somewhere around then Jani and Ollie spotted me and smiled.
‘Firedancer’ was the first truly new song and it rocked. No idea what the lyrics were about, but it definitely worked for me. Loved the steady drum and the guitars. “Maybe you’ll know this next one,” Marko said, “if you start jumping up and down like mad monkeys, then yeah, I’d say this is a familiar one. We’ll see what happens.” 😀 It was’My Dark Disquiet’ and I found myself jumping up and down, just as he had predicted. I also remembered some lyrics and gestures. 😀
I really liked ‘Sounds of yesterday’, a slower one and a break from jumping before ‘Choice Millionaire’ brought back the “fingers pointing and arms moving” – dance routine and Glen joined Ollie, Jaska and Marko for it. This was the band I remembered – I was smiling. More jumping ensued, I was home. ‘Chasing Echoes’ followed and was my favorite of the new songs that night. I might like this album after all. Phew! Last song in the main set was ‘Stay forever’ and I’d briefly wondered what song that was, totally forgetting that ‘Stay’ had been renamed. It was a good one to close the set with.
Soon we had clapped enough for them to come back and got ‘The Sweet Escape’. It took me a while to remember that I as supposed to switch on the light on my phone and wave it around. Good thing Marko was giving instructions. Someone even had a lighter – it looked beautiful. The guitar solo in the end was perfect and ‘Daze’ turned the show up a notch after.
“Do you need a lift?” Marko asked. Hell yes! t was so much fun to jump in tune with the song again. No “on and on and on” – gestures though or at least I was the only one who did it. 🙂 ‘Carnival of Rust’ ended the show to great cheers. Of course it did. Glen, who had done his best to replace Tiia and take pictures during the show, took a final one of the band with us in the background. When it was finally over I left a little dazed and very happy, glad I had gone to the show. Since I had not seen anyone familiar I just went straight back to my hotel to listen to ‘Ghostlight’ in full for the first time. 🙂
Requiem for my Harlequin
Dreaming wide awake
Temple of Thought
My Dark Disquiet
Sounds of yesterday
The Sweet Escape
Carnival of Rust
Ghostlight spring tour – one gig down, four tow go. Next stop: Manchester