Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Coldplay - Emirates Stadium 4th June 2012

Coldplay are a band that are not really my bag, but who come up with the occasional song that I really like. I decided to get tickets to see the band on the Mylo Xyloto tour partly out of curiosity and partly on a gamble that a girl I had seen a couple of times might want to go. Unfortunately things with the girl didn't go past a few dates, but that's a whole other story! :) 

Clashing with the Queen's Diamond Jubilee made the tube journey from Osterley across to Arsenal a bit of a nightmare as it was completely packed the whole way. I fed myself outside, knowing from experience how overpriced food is at the Arsenal ground and then I managed to get a reasonable price for the spare ticket outside the stadium The show was stunning! Yes I would prefer to be in a smaller sweaty venue watching alternative guitar songs, but credit where credit is due. The band bashed out hit after hit to an enthusiastic audience who knew the words to all the songs. Highlights for me were Fix You and Viva La Vida. The multi-stage set idea worked well, the oval video screens were impressive and the band came up with a nifty wrist band idea which lit up the stadium brilliantly in the dark. Giant inflatable balloons and ticker tape meant there was never a dull moment.

Sunday, 3 June 2012


My love of 80s guitar music meant there was a good chance that my musical path would come across The Levellers. I remember seeing the band in Reading on a couple of occasions. I saw them in the early days and then once again at the height of their commercial success at the Rivermead famously on the night England lost in Holland on the Graham Taylor "Do I Not Like That" night. I remember we watched the first half of the game at my place and then went down to the gig and the score was relayed to the audience by the band. More recently I travelled up to Birmingham to see the 20th anniversary tour of "Levelling The Land"

I am sure that I am not alone in saying that the second album "Levelling The Land" is my favourite album by the band. "One Way Of Life" was the song that really triggered my record buying period with the band. A stunning song topping an album full of brilliantly crafted alternative guitar electric folk driven classics. I bought the album on cassette, and played in to death literally. I recently invested in the remastered anniversary edition with all the extra tracks on mp3.

During the 1990s I kind of fell out of love with live music and so I tended to buy a lot of CDs instead and remember being very excited about the "One Way Of Life" compilation album with its new tracks, re-recordings and bonus CD, and it is a great introduction to the bands commercial chart period.

In more recent times the band released the magnificent "Letters from The Underground" album, which is a fine piece of work and summer 2012 sees the release of a new album "Static On The Airwaves".


I have nothing but admiration for The Levellers who have remained true to their values for over 20 years, a gigging band making music going through successful and not so successful (commercially speaking) times. My one remaining ambition is to overcome my aversion to camping and festivals and make the trip to the annual "Beautiful Days" festival held by the band in Devon.