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The Forum 14th May, 2004

o-kay! are you sitting comfortably? then we'll begin!!
i'l leave as much of the boring bits out as i can but suffice it to say, the train journey down was totally without incident and i arrived stress-free at my little B&B Hotel in Camden/Bloomsbury. Tiny but scrupulously clean.
i had come down a day early to have dinner with an old friend but unfortunately that fell through - not to worry Katie/Antje was over early too and we met up for a drink in the pub just round the corner and we spent a couple of hours catching up on the goss and laughing a lot.
She had brought her pics from Amsterdam and i have to say they were damn fine and put mine to shame [i will say immediately in my defence, it is hard to take pics when you are being constantly jostled by overactive hyper birds and security guards going in and out of the gate you are trying to hold on to!]
Jamesrocks has put up a very nice report and i will just elaborate on that. We did indeed queue for a horrendously long time and bless her! she put in most of the time tag-queuing for us - i kept going to have a sit down and getting talking with all those lovely girls who called out a greeting - a Big Hi to Spikesbabe, Chrisuk and her very nice husband, Duster [missed Medusa completely, hello darling!], Darkangel (hi Jill!) who was on my right during the concert and who almost got crushed by a stupid but well meaning over 6' giant brother to the little partially blind girl who was permitted to sit infront of the barrier!! he finally got the message and pissed off - just as well, i was about to abuse him verbally till he left... also Illyan, KatieMarie - not just Mobsters but many from MoreThanSpike as well - i met many people, forgive me if i have not included you here but it was a blast to see you all!
Steve Himber went up and down the line trying to get change off us for the merchandise desk, that shows how organised he was... To my total delight, Rocky (rockgoddes) also turned up and we had a huge hug on the pavement - she was helping organise the stewards at the Audience and had come over for a meeting - and stayed for the gig - didn't have a lot of time to talk but i did see her later and we caught up a little - we had a bit more at the Audience the next afternoon where i admired pictures of her gorgeous son and the Rockgod!
Lazy Eye the support group, arrived in a van midway through the afternoon to unload and set up and were followed very quickly by GOTR & James [tucked up against the rear window] - i set off at a ladylike saunter with my camera clutched in my hot little hand and arrived with a few others [only about half a dozen] at the large metal gates. i snapped a few pics that actually have turned out not too bad and the girls called out to him when he had helped unload their van - Charlie, Kevin, Sean & Steve had actually gone inside and left him and another bloke to it - he called over 'if i don't help out, the guys will kick my ass' but blew kisses and waved before disappearing inside to take the boxes in from the guy on the outside.
i knew that was it so went and rejoined the queue. Jamesrocks and i had a giggle off that little encounter and it helped put us in the mood - we could hear them doing the sound checks outside..
They were a little late opening up but shortly after 19.30 they let us in - quick bag search but not for cameras - offensive weapons this time. Dark inside and not a lot of lights on - stumbled forwards slowly till my eyes adjusted and then found the steps down to the front of the stage. i lost FrenchDaria but she had a pretty good view she reports - and just moved across till i found jamesrocks and i stood behind her with my hand on the front rail to steady me - i had a clear view of the central microphone and was quite happy. okay, my knees and spine were killing me but what the f...
i had never been to a live performance by GOTR and was determined to do at least one while they were here. i have to say they did not disappoint me! Which is more than i can say for the opeing act.
"Lazy Eye" are a four part band with a very useful bass guitar player who reminded me of Jim Morrison with his curly blonde hair and a lickable drummer, also good - because we were standing right against the righthand speakers, i had trouble hearing anything over on the lefthand side of the stage and could not hear the lead guitar at all. I wish i could say the same about the band's singer.....
He was tall, not Bad looking but pretty unremarkable and so was the voice. When you hear the whole band change key because the singer can't, you know they are in trouble... His range was so limited that when he started the second, third and fourth song, i was convinced he was singing the first one over and over again. Man, he was dire - i can only remember the lines of the chorus in the first song 'I am not John Wayne' only because he sang that line so many times.

Luckily they didn't stay long and having said what a lovely lot GOTR were and how much they had enjoyed the tour, they pissed off. It took a while until the equipment was changed over and then Steve, Charlie and Sean came out and set up - and were royally greeted by the crowd. They waved to us and did the 'i love you' handsign and got on with their preparations. i was beginning to think Kevin had fallen asleep again but he eventually joined them and when they were ready, James came out and the roof rang with our greetings!!
He was in full flirty, bouncy happy mood and loved every second on the stage.
The set list [courtesy of Teidi40, who was given one and who has promised to put it on the web - thank you, babe] was New Man, Blocking Brainwaves, Valerie, Bad, Over Now, Runaway, Katie, Miss Knightley, Call 911, Mad Brilliant, It's Nothing, Boss' Daughter, This Town, David Letterman and Vehicles Shock Me - there was a quick solo from Sean, very well received - and the encores were Liar, Say You Worry and German-Jewish.

They were playing fast and loose with the lead-ins to the songs and would play one thing and suddenly launch into a different song, which made me laugh...
The Thong was just one of the things that were thrown on the stage, there was a soft toy he pressed to his face and gave a kiss - that thong looked unworn and clean to me and i am sure if it had not been James would not have kissed it - man, he laughed at that one... Charlie looked astonished...

James was bouncing up and down like a pogo stick, which made photography difficult and he also timed a couple of leaps in the air with Kevin which looked spectacular and the crowd roared it's appreciation! James left the stage a couple of times so Charlie could have the limelight and he took full advantage of it and even if he doesn't have a terrific voice, he did pretty well and i enjoyed the Boss' Daughter, Steve also had some moments to himself and it put them both in a good mood. Charlie did a 'Pete Townsend' at the end and moving quickly put his guitar away and pulled out an old one and promptly smashed it on the stage, to the cries from the crowd who had not seen him swap it... Pete really did smash his guitars by the way! but he was a lot richer than Charlie!! Sean threw his drumsticks to the crowd and they waved and left.
Many people departed and i was trying to ring a taxi and having to wait for one to be in our area... i would still be standing there now.... It did give us the time to talk with people again and that was nice. Kevin & Charlie came out and signed autographs and had pictures taken with the fans, Steve stayed mostly on the stage and sorted out his keyboards but did talk to his fans across the barrier.
i took advantage of a lull in the crowd to go and shake Charlie's hand [firm but gentle] and tell him i liked his music and how much i had enjoyed the concert. He thanked me and looked at my tattoos and said they were cool. i told him i had brought a gift for Sean, picking up my blue stone from abound my neck and he said, i have one of those and i said i know, i gave it to you via James - he said, 'i still have it' and i told him it was lapis lazuli [my birthstone] and blue stones ward off the evil eye and that every taxi driver from Italy to Turkey had one! he smiled and said i'm wearing your birthstone... which i thought was a bit odd but i smiled too. We nattered about nothing, a bit about the music and coming back to play here again - he said quote 'ASAP, as soon as possible' unquote. i made pleasantries about him signing my picture at the Audience/cool, he said and i moved away.

As i was looking for Jamesrocks, i passed Kevin and paused to offer my hand, saying i enjoyed his music and playing - he took it [ limp wet fish! ] but smiled and said thanks, didn't stop to chat.. fine, no probs, he had pretty girls waiting...

Said goodnight to Katie, who went on to par-tay!! but i collected Jamesrocks and FrenchDaria [eventually] and we went in search of some late dinner as our backbones were hollow by this time.... i needed three policemen and a crane to get into the taxi and we wound up in Soho, looking for an Italian restaurant.. which we found and had some beautiful spinach & ricotta ravioli with a light creamy cheese sauce, washed down with cold water and some house vino... De-licious...
When we came out, looking for a cab home, i saw some mini-cabs a little further up the street and was just about to negotiate one, when a young lad accosted me on the pavement, saying "you look fun! wanna shag for £10?" - i was so astonished, i just laughed - i thought Jamesrocks was going to do herself a mischief! anyway, he pulls up his shirt bearing slightly pudgy chest, saying look what you could have... i just waved him away, half laughing, saying 'piss off, son'!! and turned my attention to the cab driver who looked fit to be tied...
Daria went & crashed, long day.. Jamesrocks and i had a hot drink and talked until the buzz died down a bit and my eyes started to close on their own behalf about 2.30am...
WHAT A NIGHT!!! man, did i enjoy myself - bloody hell, it was great!

Part Two - the Audience tomorrow night.