“We were almost rockstars there for a moment”

Martin and James – Luxor, Cologne; Mai 14th 2011

“In my blood, there’s a beat I’ve gotta turn it up
I can hear that you’ve been playing inside my head too long
In the air, there’s a wave that’s trying to get there
and your call is breaking down these walls you’ve built so strong”

After not getting too much sleep, I was back in Cologne, a few meters down the road from the Blue Shell, to see Martin and James once again, at the Luxor this time. Somehow I had arrived much too early and spent the first hour alone outside. I was lucky enough to hear the soundcheck though and say hello to Oh Napoleon as they arrived.

The audience seemed considerably younger than at the previous gigs. I would have made a bet their music didn’t necessarily appeal to teenagers, but I guess I was wrong. When they let us in I picked a spot on the side – I needed a different perspective for taking pictures.

Oh Napoleon started on time and warmed us up nicely. I’m really happy they were picked as a support act. I could not think of a better match. The Luxor was packed and people were going nuts already – this would become a loud concert.

At 20:30 it was time for Martin and James. The crowd was excited and somewhat pushy, greeting them loudly. They kept the setlist change from the previous night with only three acoustic songs in the beginning. There was already good crowd participation for ‘Turn it up’ and ‘Lay this down’ that only got louder as soon as the band came out and went into ‘Wrong Directions’.

Martin and James were in a great mood and sure had fun with the people responding so much. They told us it made them less nervous. A lot of clapping and singing along was going on through the entire full band set and got to it’s peak for ‘Crashing into love’. Once again James told us they were still dreaming of being rockstars and we happily obliged, celebrating them, yelling, screaming and clapping. They stretched out the song for quite a while, amazed by the reaction they got and ended with Martin claiming “We were almost rockstars there for a moment!”. I have to agree.

All in all the atmosphere was amazing and the audience partied so much that at one point James remarked with a smile “You don’t have to scream every time we say something.” The second acoustic set was beautiful and for the encores the band came back. ‘Devils in the Dooorway’ was not played this time – it would have been too sad I guess. All in all one amazing concert and certainly the one with the loudest audience.

Once again the guys came out after the show and took their time chatting with everyone until we were all kicked out of the club. We chatted a bit of the album being more polished and the live songs being rougher. They agreed with me that the rougher versions are better. Apparently they love playing live and it shows. Otherwise, I would not go back again and again. In my head, there’s your song, I’ve gotta turn it up!


She’s light guiding
Turn it up
Lay this down

(full band:)
Wrong directions
Bad Dream
I was blind
Live Wires
Crashing into Love

Broken Sword
I have to fall
Give a little bit
Little bits of Light
All over the news

Encore (full band):
Maybe it’s time
You’re alive

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