Milow – Zeltfestival Ruhr, Bochum; August 27th, 2014
It was my 5th Milow concert, but going there felt almost like the first time around, because I had not yet bough or listened to his latest album and felt somewhat unprepared for what was about to come. Yet, so far Milow has always managed to make me smile and I was looking forward to an enjoyable night of music. He delivered even more than I had hoped for. Not only did he make me smile, laugh even, but he also moved me to tears and gave us two hours of lovely music.
From the moment the lights went out for the first time I knew it was going to be a good concert. The audience immediately responded with loud cheers. Unfortunately the lights went back on again and they made us wait a bit longer, but when the tent got dark again and the band walked on stage, everyone clapped and yelled happily. There were a few new faces in the band or rather only one familiar face for me: Tom on guitars. Everyone looked happy to be there and Milow was in a great mood from the start. Right at the beginning he told us how surprised he had been at being invited to the Zeltfestival Ruhr for the third time and how much he enjoyed playing there. He was rather chatty all night, delivering long introductions to many of the songs.
They started of with two new songs, ‘Blue Skies’ and ‘Learning how to disappear’, before going into more familiar territory with ‘You don’t know’. Thus, I could not sing along right away, but the good vibes in the audience and on stage made me smile immediately, no matter which song they played. Milow joked that they had flown to the festival in a helicopter and how it was getting bigger every year: “The first year we walked, the second time we came on our bicycles,..” He continued telling us he has specially requested one of the big tent pillars to be set up right in front of the stage where he was looking at it all night and how the band would later climb it. That caused an immediate flashback to the 2012 POTf concert in Mannheim for me and made me laugh. Anyway, he dedicated ‘Little in the Middle’ to said pillar.
I loved all the new songs as well as the familiar ones and even choked up during ‘Building Bridges’. The new additions to the band all did a great job and of course there were a few acoustic numbers with just Milow and Tom. During one of them they were talking about their first US tour – “It was only three gigs, but if it’s more than one concert you can call it a tour…” and how Tom became the ‘King of Nashville’ with his guitar playing. Milow joked that nobody talked about his singing or lyrics, but everyone recognized Tom the next day. It was fun and we got to hear Tom play a nice solo.
All in all I laughed a lot at the song introductions. For ‘Cowboys, Pirates, Musketeers’ Milow explained was about all the things you do for fun as a kid, giving examples of making up code language, smuggling beer bottles and looking at dirty magazines only to joke that it’s not autobiographical but of course about Tom’s childhood only. About ‘Born in the Eighties’ he talked of being 23 and studying and being locked in his room all day writing songs “and then I lost the key and had to stay there…”, then he laughed about it: “That first part was true but then it got out of hand”. 😀 He also had to start the song twice because he suddenly could not remember the lyrics. 🙂
The whole concert came across light and often tongue-in-cheek, from song selection to stories told. Once in a while there was a serious note too though, if not so much in the things he said then in the songs. Being able to make serious songs with a sense of humor and funny ones with a serious undertone is one if the things I like best about Milow. He also is a good showman who manages to draw his audience in. He never needed much asking for us to clap or sing along and the call and response singing for ‘Cowboys, Indians Musketeers’ and especially ‘I was a famous singer’ worked wonderfully.
Apart from telling funny stories and bantering with Tom and the rest of the band he also told us he was in a “fight” with Jamie Cullum who played a concert at the same festival that night about who could play longer. “It would be bad if I finished and you could still hear him play”. Near the end of the concert someone yelled from the back that Jamie’s concert was over and Milow responded “Oh, he’s done? See ya!” but of course he did not leave us then. 🙂
I love the atmosphere, the music, the stories and could have listened for hours. When they finally left us with ‘Ayo Technology’ I did not want to go, but it was a high note to end the show with. Milow and the band came out after the gig to chat and sign stuff, but I didn’t stay that long. It was a good night and it made me want to go again soon. Maybe I will.
Learning How to Disappear
You Don’t Know
Little in the Middle
Echoes in the Dark
Waste the Dawn
We Must Be Crazy
Cowboys Pirates Musketeers
She Might She Might
Wind Me Up
You and Me (In My Pocket)
Against the Tide
Born in the Eighties
Millions of Miles
If I Was A Famous Singer