Two level venue, three bands and a CD for Thomas

Poets of the Fall – O2 Islington, London; January 11th, 2017

Roughly 3.5 weeks after the last Poets of the Fall concert of 2016 I was on the road once more for the continuation of the Clearview tour. I was happy to see the guys again, especially because shows in the UK usually turn out to be fun. This time around I didn’t even need to worry about a potentially sucky support act, because Flight Brigade had been confirmed for these shows and I was looking forward to seeing them play. Poets had kept their setlist, just as I had expected. It was all announced as one tour and they didn’t really have time to rehearse anything new in-between. The show was just right, a great kick-off to the last four shows of this tour and the new concert year. 🙂

Stayed with my friend M. this time around and had a long way to go to the venue, but still managed to be the first in the VIP line. The other four people there had regular tickets. We chatted, were happy to have a roof over our heads (the venue was at a mall), had food, waited. Eventually the line was divided into VIP and regular and soon after they let us in. They made a fuss about my camera even after I told them I had the manager’s permission, but they did let me in and I scored the front row center spot. 😀 As always, slightly to the side of the microphone. The venue had two levels though and my friend L. got a nice spot upstairs.

The meet & greet as nice and relaxed. All the guys were excited to be in London and none of them had slept much thanks to an early flight. Marko said he was gonna go “kookoo” because he hadn’t slept. 😀 Captain joked that it was good not be be sick for once and I remembered that he had had a cold the last two times in the UK. With Jari I had a long chat about stops on the Picadilly tube line, because he used to live on one end (Manor House) and my friend M. lived on the other (between Northfields and South Ealing). It was really funny, because neither of us could remember the name of the South Ealing stop. Also had a nice talk with Nina for a while. 🙂 During the picture I asked Jani and Jaska to switch places, but Jani refused just to mess with me and told me I’d have to pick my place. Jaska moved over though and I squeezed in between him and Olli. Thus, Olli announced to Jani “Check mate!” 😀

There were quite a few people from other countries at the gig. One couple was from Vancouver, Canada and stood to my left. C. and his wife ended up to my right. It was good company. I told the Canadian woman I was going to watch her during the gig. There is nothing like seeing a first timer’s reaction to the band. 😀 Just before the show I went for a last trip to the bathroom and ran into Tiia and D. I was happy she made it since she had not been sure she would.

When the first support act walked on stage I was quite surprised. I thought Poets only had one support. Apparently for London, they had two. I did not understand their name, but they were quite listenable and happy to play there. I later learned they were called Native Kings. I tried taking pictures, but security would not let me, even though I told them again I had permission. Texted Nina about it and got a photo pass from her. Thank you!

Flight Brigade had two camera men with them. I wondered what they were gonna do with the film, but I never asked them about it. Once Native Kings were done, they hit the stage and won over the audience. They had mixed up the setlist a little since Germany, with ‘Streets of Tokyo’ disappearing and ’39 Steps’ kicking off the show. It was awesome.

’39 Steps’ is the opener of their album and made a good opener for the show as well. I even remembered a little bit of the lyrics. From there the show only built up with the powerful ‘House Fire’, ‘Where Eagles dare’ and the amazing ‘You kill me’ that delivers every line like a punch and had me moving along with the music. Needless to say the band rocked the stage too. Marijam was snipping her fingers in rhythm and jumped up and down from the beginning and in the end she, Dorrie and Ollie were head banging too. 😀 ‘Tearaway’ kept the show at a high energy level and the kickass ‘Hurricane Season’ took it up another notch. Then, with ‘Our friends our enemies’ it got a little more quiet, the police chatter that starts the song creating a bit of an eerie atmosphere. It was the perfect last song and when Tom filmed us with his mobile again, everyone was cheering loudly. Everyone but me that is – I was fiddling with my camera for some reason. *blushes* Anway, it was lots of fun!

Setlist:

39 Steps
House Fire
Where Eagles dare
You kill me
Tearaway
Hurricane Season
Our friends our enemies

By now the venue was packed and excited chatter rose as the stage was changed for Poets of the Fall. I talked a bit with the people to my left and right to pass the time and could hardly wait for he show to start. The waiting always stretched to eternity while the concert is over in the blink of an eye and I want to go again. Rewind please!

Since the last time I had seen he guys had been last year it felt like a long break and I had missed them. The moment they walked on stage I had my hands in the air cheering loudly, happy to see them play again. From the start the atmosphere was charged with positive vibes and having a good time was the only option. Everyone was ready to rock. The guys looked like they had missed us too and set out to make it an unforgettable night. Sound was good, lights were good, my spot was perfect and the mood could not have been better. This was what I had been waiting for since Christmas. A release of all my pent-up emotions and a surge of relief flowing through me, knowing this was just the beginning of the new concert year. All the devastation I had felt after being told I was not allowed to take Fridays off any more finally left me, because things had turned out the be nowhere near as bad as they seemed at first glance and I had already found a way to continue touring. The only thing I needed now was music of a band I love and I had it right there. Perfect!

I was completely into it right away, wanting to take in every detail, yet not even seeing half of what was going on, because I can only focus on one person at a time. Also, at times, I just wanted to close my eyes and let the music carry me and I did a few times. It was all a blur of excitement and happy feelings that I wanted to last forever. Of course I for got all about watching the first timer by my side. Occasionally I glanced over there, but mostly my eyes were fixed on the stage. With all the movement up there it’s a small wonder my eyes didn’t get crossed trying to see everything. 😛

Right at the beginning Marko was in front of me with his foot up on the railing, leaning out and singing to us and eventually everyone else got there too. Even Jari, but to see him up close I had to wait until the very end. 😉 I watched Olli banging his head, flying high as he jumped off the keyboard raiser and pointing upwards as he so often does. I watched Jani and Jaska getting in a mock fight with Jani pointing his bass at Jaska and moving it forward, but I also watched them play together with Jani’s head against Jaska’s chest. I saw Captain, looking cool behind the keyboards, but also raising his hand to play notes in the air or maybe do magic and whenever I caught a glance at Jari behind the cymbal he was smiling.

Early on Marko was playing with the tassels hanging from his mic stand, pulling at them and winding them around his hands. Later he let go and held out the mic stand for us to sing along. He was on his knees, looking a few people in the eye while singing and back up again, pointing at Jani, who leaned back from him or watching closely how Olli was playing. When someone in the audience formed the morpho with their hads, he did it tooand showed it back to us. 🙂

Someone threw a Rose on stage and Jani picked it up. He tried to attach it to his bass, but it would not stay there so it ended up on the keyboards. At the end of the show, Captain threw it back into the audience and a happy girl caught it. Olli was playing back to back with Jaska at one point and all during the show they played together, looking at how the other worked his guitar. Olli kept moving back and forth across stage and when Jani stood in his spot he tapped him on the shoulder, indicating that he wanted the place back. 🙂 I saw some hugging going on too like Marko hugging Jani from behind, but I am sure I missed a lot of little gestures as well.

When it was time for ‘Carnival of Rust’ not only Marko did the mannequin pose and remained unmoving for a while, but Jani did it too. 😀 Maybe next time someone else can join in as well. Then again, some of the guys have to play. It was such a good show and with the audience on two levels the view from the stage must have been amazing. At one point Tiia was running through the space between the stage and the barrier to get some shots from upstairs and  I smiled, wondering what it would be like to go upstairs and take in the view from there. Great view I assume, but hard to get there plus I would not have wanted to leave my spot for the world. 🙂

One more little thing I remember is that both Jaska and Marko were sitting on the drum raiser, just not at the same time. Both were resting briefly and Marko looked up to his left, making me do it too. When I realized there was no audience on that side of the stage I tried to figure out what might have captured his attention but could not. I also remember how happy and relaxed the guys looked all through the show and how appreciative the audience was. It was a great night!

After the show I went and talked to Flight Brigade. Their guitarist Thomas reminds me so much of to Agent Fresco’s guitarist Þórarinn that I brought him Agent Fresco’s latest CD. Tiia spotted me giving it to him and jokingly asked if I was selling a CD to the band. 😀 Both asked me how I liked the show and were surprised when I hesitated for a moment. It’s not that I didn’t like it, quite the contrary, it’s just that each show so far has been amazing and I did not want to rate this one above the rest. The fans who only saw London got a great show, the fans who didn’t, got one as well, wherever they went. 🙂 It was fun, see you tomorrow!

Setlist:

Intro: Shadow Play
Drama for Life
Daze
The Child in Me
Dreaming Wide Awake
Diamonds for Tears
The Game
Stay
Someone Special
Sleep
Running Out of Time
Once Upon a Playground Rainy
Locking Up the Sun
Carnival of Rust

Encore
War
Lift
Children of the Sun

pictures of this concert

Clearview tour 2016/17: 21 gig down, 3 to go, next stop: Birmingham

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