Wednesday, 17 February 2010

586 AMERICAN HI-FI, Fake Ideal, Bristol Fleece, Wednesday 9 April 2003

Second gig in 3 nights, and the most anticipated of the lot despite my initial disappointment with the new Hi-Fi CD. Nevertheless, it'd just be great to meet up with the Hi-Fi guys again! So, 2 carloads decamped from Swindon, arriving at the already-busy venue just after 8 and taking a good viewing spot by the door for the evening. No moshpit return for me just yet, with my post-op hernia!

Fake Ideal, first up, rocked out in a Jetplane Landing type of earnest, passionate rock'n'roll way. Some reasonable tunes, but they were met with indifference from the crowd and ourselves, and at the moment, their reach is exceeding their grasp (or something profound like that!). The Hi-Fi themselves were due on at 9.45, but as they didn't get off the tour bus and into the venue until then, that wasn't going to happen! Greeted the Hi-Fi boys as they came through the door, making arrangements to hang out afterwards.

The Hi-Fi came on at 10, and after the usual welcome intro from Stacy, "we're a rock'n'roll band from Boston, Massachusetts," belted through a couple of new numbers from new CD "The Art Of Losing", before stylishly dispensing with best-known number and potential millstone "Flavour Of The Weak" 3rd number in, Stacy letting the crowd sing the middle 8 fill. It was clear by then we were in for a good one, as the sound was top-notch and the Hi-Fi's anthemic powerpop was doing it full justice. The harder-rocking, riffier new numbers made perfect sense "live", especially "The Breakup Song", which they did twice in a row, as they were filming it for a future video. I shouted, "play it again!" as they finished it the second time. Stacy was his usual "fantasy band camp" self - "you guys are the best audience; and I'm not just saying that to kiss ass" - as the Hi-Fi finished a rapier-sharp set with the mesmeric "Safer On The Outside". Great stuff.

And we did get to hang out afterwards, especially with Drew and Jamie. News of my recent hospitalisation and brush with death had reached the Hi-Fi camp, and story specifics were re-told to sympathetic ears. I mentioned to Jamie that he could report back to EdV and other Boston friends that I'm back gigging and in rude health, as indeed are the Hi-Fi themselves. "Feel better," said Stacy as we departed. I do now!

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