Fairtrade gig at the Coronet, London27th May 2004. Report by Emma Bedford.
First off I have to say that the Coronet is a lovely venue, lots of excellent vantage points to watch from, clean toilets and air con! Very impressive.
The night kicked off with Smaller who only did a few numbers and did well considering how tough it is to open. Then HAL came on to a great reception and were very impressive. The singer has a great set of pipes on him and I will be cruising a record shop for their single soon.
Next up were Shack who seemed to have brought with them every Scouser they could find! They were very good, but not my cup of tea at all. The bassist was frighteningly reminiscent of Bez from the Happy Mondays.
With baited breath we then awaited the reason most of the crowd were there, Starsailor. After some technical difficulties that involved roadies shining torches into a box and a lot of gaffer tape we were finally off. The boys made their usual entrance to Shark Food and then launched into a storming set that included the following in roughly this order: Shark Food, Alcoholic, Fidelity, Telling Them, Poor Misguided Fool, a new song, Love is Here, Four to the Floor, Fever, Born Again, Tie up my Hands, Silence is Easy, Good Souls.
The new song was James's customary acoustic bit and was so moving and beautiful I was in tears. The lyrics were there's no glory like personal glory, she love me, so listen out for it during the festivals. It was really moving and I'm getting goose bumps thinking about it. He was on top form, exuding confidence and having total command of the stage. At one point he even got a bit political about Fairtrade, encouraging us all to do our bit and try to effect change.
The atmosphere was electric and the small but energetic crowd lapped up every track. The energy was flowing back and forth from the crowd to the stage all night and the boys seemed to be loving it as much as we were. At one point James raised his arms in triumph and simply yelled yes! Barry got a shout out, smiled and gave everyone a wave, Stel clearly had some fans behind me and Ben got the biggest screams from the ladies! When they left the stage they were all grinning.
Silence is Easy was raucous, the best I have heard it played and it was described as being the closest Starsailor get to AC/DC by one of the roadies apparently! There were extended versions of just about everything towards the end as you got the impression the band didn't want to stop playing, so Born Again got a few extra refrains and Tie up my Hands went on for about 5 minutes. It was as ever much more powerful live. It has a raw, male energy to it that sends shivers through me.
Overall the best performance I've witnessed them give, a great venue and an electric crowd. You can't beat that feeling of coming home from an amazing gig with your ears ringing and being so high on the adrenaline you seem drunk. Thank you, Starsailor.
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