Well, this was a stroke of luck being able to see Paul Weller at the Converse gig tonight, I have never seen him before and got quietly excited about tonight, shame I can’t say the same about one of the other bands!
There are 5 bands on tonight: Towns/02:54/Japandroids/Spiritulaized/Paul Weller.
Due to work (I know, what is that all about?) we didn’t get into London on time and missed the first 2 bands, sorry guys. That also meant we missed out on the free Converse/Paul Weller t-shirts 😦
Japandroids are on stage when we get there, 2 guys from Canada, even though we are standing back a little the sound is very loud. They describe themselves as Garage Rock, and rock it is. Some tunes are catching and Brian King, he is the only one I can see, is doing quite a show, he addresses the audience, mentioning that they are from Vancouver/Canada and hope to play for the British fans again soon. He is very expressive when singing, but it doesn’t blow me away I’m afraid. Plenty of foot tapping and head nodding is going on, some tunes are really catchy and there are definitely a few supporters, old or new, in the crowd. It isn’t a “no thank you” from me, but I need to hear more to be convinced.
The next band up is Spiritulaized, hmmmm, I’m not looking forward to this one, I have saw them in Oxford last year, and I was NOT impressed whatsoever, in fact I was bored! Well, let’s see how they are tonight, maybe I just wasn’t receptive to them. The stage is set pretty much the same, Lead singer on stage left, the others stage right and a couple of girls in the middle. They came on stage and yes, no different to what I remember :-(, sorry guys but I really don’t like your style of music. There is no doubt that you are skilled and talented musicians, I just feel I should be sky high on drugs to be able to enjoy it, and that won’t be happening! I don’t think I’m the only one that struggled to be attentive, loads of people were wandering off and chatting to each other. There were set lists to be had, but I didn’t take one, nor did anyone else. I guess your music has a niche in the world, but mixing it with random competition winners may not be the best idea.
And finally it’s time for Mr Paul Weller, awesome! Steve Cradock is on the guitar, Andy Crofts from the Moons on keys, and I recognise the drummer and percussion player by sight, we ran into them outside wondering if they were part of Paul Weller’s band. We have meanwhile managed to get to the front row, but people are now pushing forward and it is getting hot and sweaty in here. The DJ plays some great tunes, so most of the crowd are already joining in the singing and dancing, if you can call swaying side to side dancing…lol, but there isn’t much room for anything else. A girl to my right shouts over “you’re loving it aren’t you”, well, I certainly try and by the looks of things she was right there with me…:-). The crowd has moved around a little, the more mature age group have taken over now, I guess we have loved Paul Weller that little bit longer. I assume Paul will play mostly tracks from his new album “Sonik Kicks“, shame on me though, I haven’t familiarised myself very much with the album yet.
It’s time, the camera men have appeared, damn, one of them is right in front of me, spoiling my vision of Paul, hopefully they’ll be moving around. The band has arrived on stage, taking their position and finally Paul Weller arrives, yes, still looking good….I would, lol!!! He is greeted by a roar of applause and screams, and the Modfather did not disappoint, starting his set with “Wake up the nation”, and the energy in the 100 club is straight away electric, awesome. Weller pays support to Wiggins due to his gold medal win, which I thought was a lovely thing to do. He also breaks one of his rules not to play any Jam songs, for me that is not an issue, I love hearing “In the City” and “Dangerous Age“. The sound is fantastic,the lighting kind enough to enable me to take a couple of decent photos, and the photographer did move around, so I got a chance to have a good view most of the time. Paul alternates between playing the keys and the guitar, even plays the guitar whilst sitting at the keyboard. His interaction with the crowd is spot on, things like “it’s great to be back in London” makes us smile and shout, and statements like “I’m getting to old to play in clubs” makes us laugh! Paul, you are not too old to play in clubs, nor are we too old to rock it out with you!! :-). Finishing with “Broken Stones”, they went off the stage, knowing how sought after the set lists will be I sieze the moment and start pulling off Paul’s set list, it’s stuck down well and I don’t want to tear it or break anything on stage. Suddenly one of the guys that hangs around at the side of the stage comes running over, stamps on my hand, shouts at me “no”, pulls off the set list, screws it up and chucks it away! Bewildered I look around, I’m not sure what has just happened, there were no more songs on there, I’m not that stupid to pull off the set list before all the songs have been played. My hand is a bit sore, but I guess I’ll life, I must say that was a very aggressive reaction it has never happened to me before, and I’m the proud owner of many many set lists.
Paul Weller and Band return on stage to play another couple of songs, I know, I should really know which ones they were, but I can’t remember 😦
Once they left the stage and leave the audience hot, sweaty and happy the techie guy that stood on my hand came back to me, explaining to me that he did what he did because he was worried that I would pull a cable out or damage some equipment….REALLY? It seems a bit of an excuse to me for a complete over the top reaction…….but I must add, he was nice enough to get me a set list in the end, and no lasting damage to my hand either.
All in all it was an amazing gig, and I’m so very glad to have had the chance to take part in it, I loved every minute of it, Thank you Mr. Weller.
And, as I found out a few days later, Liam Gallagher, was there too, at the front row……..awwwww, he wanted to join me, lol!! Seriously, shame we didn’t notice him at the time, but we were to busy watching Mr. Weller!!!