Set 18 2014, 7h00
Set 18 2014, 6h55Wed 17 Sep – Resurrection“The newspaper Parool considered it to be a reunion. We prefer to cal it a resurrection. This band should never have split 30 years ago.”
The opening words of Hans Croon at the Paradiso at the start of their first show in 30 years. During their existance from 1979 to 1987 The Dutch released two ep’s, an lp and several singles of which their single This Is Welfare became a minor hit. The 90 minutes setlist presented cross section of their repertoire. After an uncertain start in openers Codified Minds and The End Of Ideology the band found their pace and like a smooth machine the combo played their songs to a cheerful public. Highlights in the setlist were America, Another d’Artagnan, This Old Land, This Is Welfare and the b-side Out Here Where The Caveman Dwells, of which some were introduced with nice anekdotes by Hans Croon. Another Sunny Day was quoted with an appearence at Top Pop, but without the ballet as his brother Bert Croon noted. After 75 minutes and a short break The Dutch returned for their first encores b-side Heimat vorbei and Nous Sommes Très Petit dedicated to their old light engineer, who past last year. A second encore with Creams White Room brought an end to this resurrection.
The band have plans enough for the future. Their ep This Is Welfare and the album Under The Surface were recently re-released through iTunes and Spotify containing bonustracks. Working At Los Alamos is planned for the near future and who knows what will follow. The Dutch is back and showed that there is still room for their great songs and performance.
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Hans Croon - Vocals, guitar
Bert Croon - Keyboards, backing vocals
Jan de Kruijf - Bass
Klaas Jongmans - Drums, backing vocals
Nov 15 2013, 11h54
Nov 15 2013, 11h50
Mai 12 2013, 19h24Sat 11 May – Lichter der Stadt II - Letzter Halt
Around seven we left our hotel for the concert at the Dortmund Westfalenhalle. It was a ten minutes ride with the U Bahn, and we arrived at the hall just to witness the last three to four songs of Frei. At ten to eight the intro music of two old German songs, Lilly Marlene and one unknown to us, were played and then the countdown followed for the last concert of Unheilig’s Lichter der Stadt II – Letzter Halt! Tour.
In two hours Der Graf and his band played a varying set of songs from the bands history. A great setlist which was a lot louder than the first Lichter der Stadt tour of last year. Many of the ballads were replaced by older louder songs like Feuerengel and Freiheit. Although Winter seemed to be gone for quite some weeks now, the song still was surprisingly in the setlist and the video played along on the screens.
After a slow and a bit uncertain start Der Graf came loose. Certainly when one of the woman at the front row threw him a towel. He wiped his sweat away while asking the woman if she wanted the towel back in a dry or wet condition. Of course she wanted it back in a wet state. So after wiping some more sweat away he threw it back. A couple of songs later a second woman threw him a towel. Again he wiped back the sweat and again the question with the same answer. This time when he threw it back the woman wiped away her sweat with the towel. Which surprised Der Graf when watching it on the screen. The crowd went hilarious about the scene.
At the intro of one of the later songs in the setlist the keyboards went down. 'No power' was the conclusion and Der Graf entertained the crowd. When the power was back we had to imagine seeing a camera in the hand of Der Graf, like in Men In Black, and with a push on the 'bottom' he explaned that we were at an Unheilig concert. Der Graf went behind the coulisse and the band would start a new song.
Just before Maschine Der Graf was able to get all the public from their seated places. In the end they returened for three encores and after introducing the band at the end, Der Graf thanked the crowd and asked for patience towards the writing of the new album.
We enjoyed every minute of it and it was a pity it was over so soon. At ten the lights went on and at a quarter after we had the U Bahn back to the city.
Der Stadt (intro)
Herz aus Eis
Tage Wie Gold
Lichter der Stadt
So wie du warst
Geboren um zu leben
Der Graf - Vocals
Henning Verlage - Keyboards
Christoph Termühlen (Licky) - Guitar
Martin Potthoff (Potti) - Drums
Mar 27 2013, 1h09Tue 26 Mar – Clock Opera
Last year my friend and I visited the concert of Clock Opera at the Paradiso. They played the small hall that evening in October 2012, but it turned out quite disappointed because of the worse sound.
Still we decided to visit them again when they played the Bitterzoet. And This time no disappointments. What a gig. With again the full debut album Ways To Forget, but also three songs released through the deluxe version of the album on iTunes. The sound was suburb, the atmosphere eclectic, and the crowd went crazy.
The band has certainly learned from the touring in the past year, since the setlist was build to a climax which the crowd could feel from the start, when first single White Noise opened the set. It was great to hear the extra songs like Let Go The Lifeboats, New Arrivals and Alouette to be performed. After them they build up to a climax, while the crowd certainly was longing for the singles Once And For All and Lesson No 7. The latter played as a last encore, but both played with passion and lots of energy. Belongings ended the regular set with a mash explosion of energy by the band. The waiting for the encores took some time as Guy Connelly explained on returning that the band weren't able to hear the cheering crowd because of the thick door seperating the hall from the backstage area.
This time the crowd was left with a great feeling and a lot of andrenaline and energy after the band left the stage playing there for more than an hour. They had given all and delivered even more. What a concert, what a vibe and what a sound.
Guy Connelly - Vocals, guitar, effects
Adam West - Bass
Dan Armstrong - Keyboards, backing vocals
Che Albrighton - Drums
A Piece Of String
The Lost Buoys
Let Go The Lifeboats
Move To The Mountains
Once And For All
Lesson No 7
Mar 16 2013, 14h17Mon 11 Mar – Everything Everything
After the release of their great album Arc I was wondering how much of the album they would bring into the set. It turned out quite a lot.
At a quarter after nine they climbed up the stage and opened the set with Undrowned. From the start the crowd was enthousiastic, as were the band. In five quarter of an hour they played a diverse set from their two albums, with a focus on their just released album Arc. The set contained most of my favourites from this new album, and I saw that I wasn't the only one enjoying it to the max.
The sound was very good and well balanced. Every detail was heard and the vocalist Jonathan Higgs established a great performance. The band had hired an extra keyboardplayer to meet the standard of the album. It was over much too soon, but for sure they showed their capabilities. What a band, what a performance.
Jonathan Higgs - Vocals, guitar
Jeremy Pritchard - Bass, programming, backing vocals
Alex Robertshaw - Guitar, keyboards, backing vocals
Michael Spearman - Drums, backing vocals
Torso Of The Week
Tin (The Manhole)
MY KZ, UR BF
Feet For Hands
Out 14 2012, 15h12Fri 5 Oct – The Fixx
In all those years that I know The Fixx, they only played the Netherlands once and that concert I never visited. So I was very eager to see them on this tour, and I can tell you I certainly was not disappointed.
It seems to become a trend to play several sets during an evening. At half past eight the band opened with Deeper And Deeper and from the start the atmosphere and enthusiasm was there, both in the band and in the audience, to turn this evening into a very special one. The band played tide and inspired, and the setlist was well chosen making every number a highlight. Cy Curnin sang very good, Jamie West-Oram's guitar playing was inspiring, the bass of Dan Brown was tight and his playing inimitable. Rupert Greenall conjured the most beautiful sounds from his synthesizers and Adam Wood played tight as well.
For sure the audience was aware that this concert wasn't going to be a trip down memorylane. With the new album Beautiful Friction out for just over a month, the band played seven songs, a third of the set, from this new addition to their impressive discography. The three album openers, single Anyone Else, Just Before Dawn and Take a Risk followed Deeper And Deeper, which fitted well and showed that The Fixx hasn't lost their writing skills to still create great new wave songs.
Cy Curnin explained to the audience that he had cycled through The Hague the night before, and that all went well until he had to ride against the wind. He also told us that a visit to the Netherlands in the past meant also a visit to the potshop, but nowadays only Rupert Greenall seemed to be the only who liked to visit the coffeshop. After several golden oldies and the new one Follow That Cab they ended their first set with my first introduction to the band in 1982 Stand or Fall.
After twenty minutes or so The Fixx returned and opened the second set with the beautiful Outside. Some great songs followed in the next hour and to be honest it was over much quicker than expected. In this set the title track and What God? from Beautiful Friction followed, after which Cy Curnin explained that by releasing a new album it certainly had led them from one thing to another. The great The Fool, with Rupert Greenall in top form, who extended the song with his playing skills. And before we knew it Saved By Zero closed this set.
After a short break The Fixx returned and played another three steaming songs, with Red Skies in which the audience got a change to sing along. They ended the evening with Secret Seperation and the promise not to wait for another 28 years before returning to the Netherlands.
Deeper And Deeper
Just Before Dawn
Take a Risk
Less Cities, More Moving People
Reach The Beach
Follow That Cab
Woman On a Train
Stand or Fall
How Much Is Enough?
One Thing Leads To Another
Saved By Zero
Out 13 2012, 12h43Fri 12 Oct – Ultravox Brilliant Tour 2012
Ultravox played the 013 at Tilburg on 12 October 2012. For someone living halfway between Alkmaar and Amsterdam to drive to Tilburg on a Friday night is asking for troubles. There are traffic jams along the route and although the Garmin told me, when leaving, it would take one hour and thirty-five minutes, just after driving a couple of kilometers the time went up to over 2.5 hours. In the end we arrived in time and were at the venue just a couple of minutes before the start of the concert.
Then it turned out that being on the guest list does not mean that you can straight walk in. No, I needed to queue up in front of the pay box. Meanwhile a guy was desperate trying to sell some extra tickets. Since the starting time was coming closer in the end he wanted to give them for free to anyone who wanted to have them. Nobody reacted so he tore them apart and walked into the venue. By the time I was checked and finally was able to enter the hall Ultravox had already finished two songs. To be honest I didn't mind because the sound was dramatic. There was a rolling and thundering bass that vibrated through the venue. The synthesizers couldn't be heard or generated high pitches and triggered the sound system. Not only the crowd was wondering why, but also the band seemed uncertain. For example White Chinasounded like a wall of indefinable sounds and the synthesizer of Billy Currie could not be heard. So we decided to go to the balcony instead of a place close to the stage.
Suddenly with the start of Rise, already the ninth track in the setlist, the sound was clear and well balanced and the party could start. The band also got convinced of the sound and looked much more relaxed. The Voice, in earlier tours the song to end the regular setlist, this time closed the first set, with a short closing drum session. The band went off for a twenty minute break.
It gave us time to have a drink and find a friend we were suppose to meet. It was nearly three years ago since we spoke and saw eachother at the concert of Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark and Simple Minds at the HMH. To be sure to have a good spot for the second set we went in early and got ourselves a place at the center just a couple of meters from the stage. Immediately with the opening of Live it was clear that the second set would be a different cup of tea. A well balanced sound and a band in shape.
The voice of Midge Ure was excellent and very strong. And to be honest the only time he didn't manage it, was during the encore of Dancing With Tears in My Eyes, when he missed one of the high pitches. A funny thing to watch was the dressing code of the band. All wear shirts instead of Midge Ure who was dressed in a suit with tie. After a couple of songs in the second set he took off his jacket.
The starting of Vienna was met with a lot of applause and the crowd went crazy during the violin solo.
Overall the new songs from the Brilliant album fitted rather well in the setlist. With Rise, Lie and Flow being the strongest songs, while encore Contact was accompanied by a animation of a rotating phone in space, ending with a flat where all the lights went out. The band worked to a climax after Vienna. With a bunch of uptempo songs starting with new one Flow they ended the second setlist and returned rather quickly for the two encores.
Reap the Wild Wind
Visions in Blue
Rage In Eden
We Stand Alone
The Thin Wall
I Remember (Death In The Afternoon)
One Small Day
Love's Great Adventure
All Stood Still
Dancing With Tears in My Eyes
Set 1 2012, 8h10Fri 31 Aug – No-Man
After four years No-Man returned to the Cultuurpodium de Boerderij at Zoetermeer with a great setlist and an enthousiastic band. This time the band was much more relaxed then when they played there in early september 2008. Tim Bowness and Steven Wilson did introduce the songs with a laugh and a smile and the band was in top shape. With an audience that came to listen to the band, instead of talking during the concert, it became a memorable evening.
The setlist contained all the songs from their just released live album Love And Endings with eight extra’s including the new uptempo track Warm-Up Man Forever, and also Close Your Eyes and the encore Back When You Where Beautiful, which were both on the setlist for the first time. Housewives Hooked on Heroin was spontaneously played as a third encore, Tim Bowness and Steven Wilson both complaining against eachother that they had not had the time to practice the song. Steven Wilson even asked Micheal Bearpark for the chords, while Tim Bowness layed down a sheet with the lyrics. But the performance went flawness.
Of course Days In The Trees, one of the highlights introduced by Steven Wilson as being the song that made it possible for No-Man to professional work and live from making music, did not lack the set and the sound again was more progressive and louder than on the album. An observation which was valid for more songs like My Revenge On Seattle, Caroline Skeletons and Time Travel In Texas.
Only Rain and Lighthouse were also highlights in the setlist, that turned out to be a nearly two hour musical journey through the discography of No-Man. Like Steven Wilson said just before they ended the concert with Housewives Hooked on Heroin: “We always want to play an extra track when we are in Holland.” It was that feeling which stayed with the people when the lights went on after they left the stage. The crowd had wanted more songs than they were able to give.
Again a memorable concert from a memorable band with a much appreciated setlist and the great feeling of being there again. For certain one of the highlights of this years concert journeys.
Together We're Strangers
All the Blue Changes
My Revenge On Seattle
Warm-Up Man Forever
Time Travel In Texas
Beaten By Love
Close Your Eyes
Wherever There Is Light
Days In The Trees
Back When You Where Beautiful
Housewives Hooked on Heroin
Tim Bowness - Vocals
Steven Wilson - Guitar
Micheal Bearpark - Guitar
Steve Bingham - Violin
Pete Morgan - Bass
Stephen Bennett - Keyboards
Andy Booker - Drums, percussion