The Amazing World of Si Hart

Amazing insights into my mind as I battle against the inefficient world of the library, moderate a message board, write Doctor Who audio adventures and try and stay sane!

Monday, June 25, 2007

Wet in Hyde Park

I suppose after two great, hot and sunny concerts in Hyde Park over the last few years we were due a wet one. And we certainly got one. There we were, thinking we'd got away with it, when suddenly, without much warning there was a clap of thunder and an absolutely torrential downpour for 20 minutes, from the end of Crowded House and just before Peter Gabriel. Even the large blue plastic sheet some enterprising person in front of us managed to set up as impromptu rain shelter wasn't quite enough to keep us dry. Still, it was all worth it. Oh yes!

The concert day began with a search for a Crowded House T-shirt. Unfortunately the one I really wanted had sold out, but the one I got is really lovely so I'm happy with that. I couldn't afford one last time I saw them, in June 1994 at the end of my first year in Sheffield, so it was great to be able to this time.
The Ghosts were the first band we saw. They were average. The singer's voice seemed lost against the music, which was pretty but uninspired. There was a speedy stage change, and burgers, and half hour later The Feeling were up on stage. The sun came out with them too! They were really good. I wasn't quite sure what to expect from them, but I was really pleased with what we did get. They've got mammoth stage presence, looked like they were enjoying themselves and got the crowd in their hands by playing a cover of Video Killed The Radio Star, and doing it brilliantly. Very good, and a band I'd like to see on their own, because a full set would be wonderful to see.
Peter Gabriel, who was on last, was of course a star. In one of his more obscure moods, he left the set list up to the fans and so we got treated to some of the more obscure tracks that you wouldn't expect to hear. Poor Dave didn't recognise many of them! In the midst of the unknown, we did get some favourites: a stirring up-tempo Solsbury Hill; an encore of Sledgehammer, which the audience were singing before it started; a brilliant rousing Steam and a really lovely Blood of Eden, which is one of my favourites. It was great to see him enjoying himself so much (and only a few feet away from us, as he came down the ego ramp with his bassist and lead guitarist) and it's nice to be able to knock another legend off my list of people I've always wanted to see live.

The best though, were Crowded House. I was always against the idea of them reforming, just in case they ruined all the magic by not being quite as good as they used to be. It might have tarnished them. I should have known better and trusted Neil Finn not to put a foot wrong. They were magnificent. On form? At their best! They seemed to be enjoying themselves so much- Neil Finn with his new Rod Stewart hairdo, Nick Seymour smiling away as he played, Mark Hart as cool as ever and the new guys Matt Sherrod doing well on the drums and Liam Finn on guitar and backing vocals...
It was simply amazing for me to be there hearing them play some of the songs I never thought I'd ever hear live again. They started with an energetic Locked Out (which Steve had only said a few hours before he'd like to hear live!) before playing a mix of old favourites- we got to do crowd versions of Weather with You and Four Seasons in One Day (for Paul, touchingly).The new songs came over really well, which makes me look forward to the new album next week, particularly the new single Don't Stop Now and the very atmospheric Silent House.
Then in the middle they played Fall at Your Feet. Oh my! It sounded so gorgeous. It hit me then that I was really seeing them and I felt myself welling up a bit. Then, after that they went into Distant Sun, and I cried. I was really overwhelmed. It's never happened at a gig before, but this was something really special for me. It was a wonderful experience and I'm so glad I was there.

The rest of the weekend was great too, but that's a story for another time!


Anonymous Si Hunt said...

Glad you enjoyed the show Si, we thought of you on Sunday and hoped it was going well!


8:39 am  

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