2 May 2012

I like the new Stackridge line-up

There is nothing like keeping a diary (which is what this blog is mostly) to measure the passage of time.

Through this I am shocked to discover that I had not seen Stackridge live since November 2009 and had not been to the Boom Boom Club since February 2010.

I corrected both errors when Stackridge returned to the Boom Boom Club at the end of April.

There was an immediate shock when they came on stage with the familiar big, bald and bouncy figure of Mike Slater replaced by the more demure and more hirsute Clare Lindley commanding the central position.

Also missing was bassist Jim Walter which meant a reshuffling of the guitar duties.

Still there were (L-R) James Warren (bass), Glenn Tommey (keys), Eddie John (drums) and Andy Cresswell-Davis (guitars and ukulele).

The immediate benefit of the changes was that, with only five people on stage they are all clearly visible to the packed house. No idea why so many seats were put out but Pete Feenstra did the decent thing and got them all to bunch up to make more room for those of us who prefer to stand.

The music changed too.

The lead violin and acoustic guitars gave it more of an folksy feel, even a little Irish Jiggy at times, and this was reflected in the song selection that favoured the short bouncy number over the longer slower ones.

Missing were some of my proggy favourites like Purple Spaceships Over Yatton and God Speed the Plough.

Other classics were selected, such as The Road to Venezuela and (of course) Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime, and these went down a storm, as did the whole set.

I made the occasional trip back to the bar to replenish my glass of Wainwrights and was amazed at how quiet everybody was. I've heard more people talking at the English National Opera.

I did not know even the old songs that well but that was no barrier to enjoyment of what was an excellent concert. Sadly drummer issues (apparently) meant that they were a little late on stage and the strict curfew meant no time for an encore despite the large clamouring for one.

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