Friday, 8 January 2010

660 THEY MIGHT BE GIANTS, Galen Ayres, London Kentish Town Forum, Thursday 26 May 2005

The hectic May continues, thought not as hectically as expected due to the cancellation of the 2 Dear Leader London gigs - bah! Nevertheless, this is a first trip to Ye Olde Londone Towne for a gig, since last September! Also, first time at the Forum since God knows when! Rachel picked me up straight after work and we had an encouraging 2 1/2 hour drive straight in, hitting the venue at 10 to 8. This however meant enduring another in a long line of poor TMBG supports, the female-fronted Galen Ayres, who weren't bad, just dull, particularly when trying to be Coldplay/ Keane moody rather then their snappier, poppier fayre.

The place filled up notably thereafter for this still nowhere near sold out gig, and the two Johns and their cohorts took the stage a little after 9.15. Bounding straight into "Istanbul (Not Constantinople)" with big John F on guitar, bouncing around the stage like a dirigible, it was clear they were in great form, playful, quirky, upbeat, poppy and downright fun as ever before. "Experimental Film" was a jaunty early highlight before the excellent new "Alphabet Of Nations" (which did exactly what it said on the tin!) and a brilliant double header of "Don't Let's Start" (their first ever single, introduced tonight as, "a new one!") segueing perfectly into a frantic "Why Does The Sun Shine", my personal highlight.

Then TV presenter and celebrity TMBG fan Jonathan Ross came onstage to introduce the "Venue Songs" section of the set - 9 numbers written about venues from TMBG's recent US tour, highlighting their supreme inventiveness. They subsequently roared back with a brilliant, almost poignant "Angel", the inevitable "Birdhouse In Your Soul" (which still manages to not sound overplayed!) and a stunning "Fingertips", an amalgam of soundbite hooks crushed together, which I wish my son Evan, a big TMBG fan, could have seen! "New York City" (which Rach had been jonesing for on the journey up) rounded off a fantastic 1 1/2 hours of cheesy grin-inducing fun and supreme entertainment. Just over 1 1/2 hours on the journey home too, to cap a memorable evening!

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