27 April 2013

The Thin White Duke get Petersham singing (April 2013)

Things like babies (theirs, not mine) have kept me and The Thin White Duke apart for just over a year so when they came back to the Fox and Duck I was there to see them.

Admittedly I was a little late, having been to the theatre and an exhibition earlier in the day, but I got there after just a couple of numbers.

It was something of a fight to get in to the pub as the place was packed, especially the main standing area just inside the main door. A managed to win the fight to the bar for a pint of Young's Ordinary and then the second fight through the crowd to the seat with the clearest view.

The font man, Dave, was far out in front, escaping from the narrow confines of the makeshift stage area. Behind him on guitar and bass were Ben and George as usual. The surprise came from the new faces on keyboards and drums, Norbert and Ashley.

Speaking to George during the break he said that he preferred the sound of the new lineup. I had not noticed much change at that point so I paid more attention in the second half and it was the rendition of Cracked Actor that convinced me that he was right. Their sound was richer and funkier.

The band may be 40% new but the set is very much the same and we were treated to a couple of hours of Bowie's greatest hits, and a few oddities, from Queen Bitch to China Girl.

Ziggy Stardust featured heavily, as expected, and as it should. It is still a brilliant album and time has done nothing to diminish it.

The one surprise was the inclusion of Reality, the title track from the 2003 album.

The Thin White Duke know what they are doing and they ended the set with Heroes which was quickly followed, due to time pressure, by an encore of other sing-a-long songs, ending with Starman. Most of us had been singing for most of the evening and by the end we were all joining in. There was dancing too but I know my limits.

The best news is that The Thin White Duke will be back before too long, August I believe, and I expect to be there. I'll try to be on time.

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