So Gaslight decided to play a few local shows in the UK before the festival summer not including London. Brighton was the closest thing I could get to without ridiculous amounts of travel involved. A friend of mine was sweet enough to plonk my name on the guest list – love having friends in all the right places. Having said that, I am always more than happy to pay for tickets, how else is my favorite band going to make a living? Again, a post for another day.
I hopped on the train to Brighton on a lovely, sunny day in June. Didn’t have any time to explore the city but will definitely go back to do so. Headed straight to the Brighton Dome. I had a bit of a hard time finding the box office for the place but after asking three times I finally found it. Got my ticket and in I went. My friend had bailed on me so I attended the gig by myself, but I didn’t really mind, it’s Gaslight and you always meet great people at their gigs.
Support were The Scandals. I’ve heard a few of their songs before but never seen them live. It’s one of those New Jersey bands that are great, like Bouncing Souls, but you hardly get to see them in the UK unless they tour with Gaslight or the likes. So here’s my appeal: come to the UK more, we really want to see you live! Their set was amazing, and none of that “considering the room was half-empty” shenanigans, no seriously good.
Most people didn’t show up until Gaslight was set to go on stage as it was a week day, at least I think that was the reason, who knows. The show wasn’t sold out but it was packed enough. The venue is quite beautiful, like a small town theatre, the sound wasn’t half bad either.
Oh yes, did I mention I was front row? FRONT freaking ROW! *fangirling*
At 9pm, Brian and the gang came on stage and rocked it for about 2 hours. A really long set that everyone thoroughly appreciated and enjoyed. 28 songs of one of the best bands in the world, in my opinion anyways. The opening song was a slow one, which was very unusual for the band and for a concert in general but somehow it fitted beautifully. ‘Have Mercy’ has this haunting feeling to it that I can’t quite put my finger on. It’s slowly starting to be one of my favorites from the ‘Get Hurt’ album. It was followed though by a roaring ‘Handwritten’ and it’s one of those songs where everyone knows the lyrics. In general the setlist from that night is basically a list of my favorite TGA songs, with a few songs missing. The absolute best bit was half-way through with ‘She Loves You’ (“and if all was well and your heart could find the words, would we be for better, baby, would we be for worse” – who can argue with this?), ‘Blue Dahlia’ (“there’s a poetry about these streets that’s lips from your skin and goes right underneath” – I used to listen to this when I lived in North London, and somehow this song has become the anthem for my time at uni there), ‘Selected Poems’ (I can’t quote a best line, because the whole song is an entirely beautifully written poem) followed by ‘1930’ (it’s one for the hardcore fans, it’s very punky and far from the ‘Get Hurt’ sound, yet it’s a total favorite with everyone) and ‘Great Expectations’ (“I saw tail lights last night in a dream about my old life, everybody leaves and I’d expect as much from you” – this is pure rock n roll, this song makes me want to throw on a rockabilly dress, grab a guy and hit the dance floor).
The band followed this with a heart-wrenching rendition of ‘Wish You Were Here’ by Pink Floyd. Do yourself a favour, go to YouTube, find it and listen to it. I listened to it for a week straight after the gig and I wish this was on a record somewhere. Brian’s voice fits the song almost better than David Gilmour’s – and I do love me a bit of Pink Floyd.
The concert finished with ‘We’re Getting A Divorce, You Keep The Diner’, which is another oldie but goodie from the first album.
All in all, the band seemed to be tired, just a little bit. Brian, not so much, he actually looked and sounded a lot better than he did the last two shows I saw the band at in London. His interaction with the crowd is always hilarious.
It was definitely a great gig and it makes me quite sad that the band is taking a break. I’m hoping for some solo stuff or Horrible Crowes type of things. After seeing Brian’s performance at Newport folk festival, I think he should try that direction for a bit. And definitely no forget about London.