Gig Review – The Stranglers – Fibbers York – 13th July 2015.
Northern Road Trip Journal – Day 1
The Grand Old Duke…
Landing at Harry Bell for an ungodly o’clock rendezvous with Antro, we set the Sugar Tongs for the heart of The North. Arriving at York without incident, we took in some of the sights and splendour this fair haven has to offer (mainly while trying to find somewhere to park and trying to find the venue).
Indeed we walked the walls and crossed the Ouse and back again. And on our journeys, dear old Apple Maps guided us to our destination, only it wasn’t our destination… yet it was… or at least it used to be! Finding ourselves at a location where the venue indeed once was, we arrived in time to catch a concert from the one and only Martha Reeves. Apparently confused and disoriented, a local passer-by took pity on us and offered us directions while giving us none and telling us about his day at work and to watch out for the Cyclists, while trying to engage us on Londres. Seeing an opportunity, we made a break for it and receiving some sound information from a sound engineer we headed in the direction of where the venue that used to be there is now!!!
En-route we chanced upon a Kathinboots and chums headed in the opposite direction in search of refreshment. Eventually we arrived at where it now is to discover a queue forming outside with KatieJJ and family at the head. We said hello then went to the pub next door for a bit of a social. Here we met up with The Owens, Campbell and The Pauls, Pauline and Sally plus many other good people, the vibe generally being good and one of excitement/anticipation for the coming attraction.
Inside the venue we discovered it was divided into two performance areas and support act The Hangnails would be in the smaller one while The Stranglers themselves would be in the main area. A great time saving device in terms of the practicalities of setting up and clearing away but from the perspective of the support act, somewhat flawed. That flaw being that we, along with a large section of tonight’s crowd went straight into the main area and missed the support act completely!
The main space itself was rather small, with the barrier being very close to a stage which was looking rather intimate and cosy, no feline swingers tonight!
On the dot of around about nine, the lights dimmed, Waltzinblack fired up and The Men in Black arrived. Toiler began a set very similar to the previous gigs in Worthing and Hampton. Once more we were treated to the extended remix of Five Minutes but alas the encore was sans Walk On By.
The Stranglers delivered a superb performance with energy and sparkle, while the crowd hung on every note and every word. And it was hot! Boy was it hot! (It was so hot in fact that, after the show I noted that I had been drier after coming out of the Sea at Worthing!) Buckets of sweat!
It was a real privilege to see the Stranglers up close and personal tonight, a privilege also to be with such a great crowd who may have been a little subdued by the heat. On which note the band appeared to be feeling the heat a little, at one point Baz turned to JJ and mouthed I’m dying up here! Worse places to be was – Sweating my Bollocks off in a tiny little night club! And he also shared with the audience that he was knackered by the heat! Nonetheless the band gave a cracking performance the sound was great and the crowd lapped it up. Oh and Jim’s drums particularly shone in Four Horsemen (while shining throughout the rest of the set of course).
When they were up they were most definitely up!
And had they ever been down, they would most certainly have been Down in The Sewer etc Etc EiTC.
Photos: Karlos Antrobus.