THAT WAS FRIKKIN' AWESOME!!!!
As soon as TR hit the stage, everyone got the vibe that he was 'on' and in a great mood.. and what a show it was.. Definitely a Todd crowd too..
DeMontford Hall is located in Leicester.. For those of you unfamiliar with this East Midlands city of the UK, it is historically most well known as the home of our very own 'TheSurfTalks' (Greg) who I had the pleasure of meeting before the gig.. The venue was great, it certainly had classical music pretentions (not a low-brow rock venue.. lol) so it seemed a good choice for this tour.. and is located in the grounds of the University.. 'I love college towns, because only YOU understand how good we are!.. or how bad!!' Todd declared at one point..
I attended this show as a Todd fan so I don't have much input on Joe Jackson, except to say his (well performed) set seemed quite a bit shorter than some of the US shows I've heard.. He played 'Steppin Out' second, and finished with 'Citizen Sane' (best song I thought) and 'Is She Really Going Out With Him'.. He also played some weird old song from 1913 that he said he will be playing in a movie soon??..
Todd strolled on to a warm welcome and picked up his fantastic sounding new acoustic guitar (the black one with weird 'Dalek' like gold things stuck on it) and kicked off with a powerful Lysistrata and moved through the familiar opening acoustic guitar set, including fine renditions of 'Cliche', 'I Saw The Light', 'LOTCM' and 'Beloved Infidel'..
Todd then commented that he was very appreciative that UK fans had twice bought tickets to see him in the space of a year.. and said such support inspires him to do unusual songs.. so, sitting at the piano he pulled out one of my favourite all-time TR tunes, 'Can We Still Be Friends'.. Then a FLAWLESS 'Viking' and well sang 'Hello It's Me'.. 'Bang on the.. you know what' followed (very well received) and then a great version of 'Afterlife'.. I was so pleased that Todd had kept this in the set.. so great to hear a song off of Liars..
After leaping in the air to complete the closing guitar song 'Black & White', Todd re-introduced Ethel (to perform with Joe I expected).. but no!.. TR says 'We're a music machine up here.. we keep coming up with new stuff to do'.. Ethel looked confused... 'You know.. the one we learned today'.. TR said off mike.. lol.. and they played an unbelievable 'Lord Chancellor's Nightmare Song'.. Todd nailed every single lyric, and acted out the song as he sang, finishing the tune by spinning around like a ballerina.. lol.. he was having a ball..
Next came a beautiful 'Pretending To Care'.. it was at this point that I realised how close I was (3-4 metres away in the front row) as I could hear Todd singing the high 'Why Don't you care' part at the end of the song through the air, not on mike..
Joe came back on to do his tune with Ethel, then Todd declared 'Seeing as the last premiere went so well, lets try another one!' and TR, Joe and Ethel played an amazing 'Soul Brother'.. Joe and one of the Ethel guys backed Todd up on vocals in the chorus.. TR played it on acoustic and sang it great, including some fine wailing at the end.. I have to say it, it was better than the Liars version.. Todd had a huge grin at the end of this one..
Then.. Another surprise: 'Here's one from my first album' said Joe, and Ethel kicked off a frantic 'Got The Time Ticking In My Head' Todd joined in on the frantic tune on Foamy and it sounded great.. (I forgot this was a Joe Jackson song, I remember the metal band 'Anthrax' covering it in the 90's.. lol)
The great night of music was concluded with the well received familiar 'Weeps' Medley..
I won't forget this night.. Thanks Todd (and Ethel and Joe)...
Can't wait for London!!