I’ve always loved live music. Perhaps it was my father's influence, I was taken to gigs from the age of ten. I got to see some really amazing bands like the Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd and Santana (and due to my amazing ability to nag my poor dad into pretty much anything… Kylie Minouge).
Later, when I had my own money and a passion for discovering new music, I went to at least a gig a week. I loved the atmosphere and the way the crowd responded to the music. I loved the way the set progressed, the way the band interacted with each other and the way they spoke to us. The applause at the end! The encore! I loved listening to the excited chatter as the crowd dispersed and discussing the highlights with my friends.
Last week I went to a gig in Sydney with my good friend Sal and a couple of her mates. It had been a while since my last gig and I felt a little rusty, I didn’t know what to wear. I forgot to listen to the band’s latest album (gig revision, very important if you like to sing along). To be honest, I felt like somebody’s mum…
Was it always this loud, I wondered?
I chatted to Sal, or rather, I pretended to. I’ll be honest, I couldn’t hear a word she said over all the noise coming from the stage. I smiled and nodded hoping that I’d reacted appropriately and she hadn’t in fact asked me what we’d done for Christmas.
I drank some water (I know, I was at a gig, I should have had a beer in my hand, but it’s dry January!) and tried not to sound like the old lady I’ve turned into by saying things like…
“Gosh, they are ever so loud!”
“It’s already passed my bed time! I hope I can last till the end”
Maximo Park are a British band with four albums under their belt. I first fell in love with them when I saw them at Reading Festival in 2006. They have soulful gut wrenching lyrics and upbeat poppy rhythms. Their music speaks to me. Or at least it did… in those years I felt adrift, and alone.
They kept me company when I travelled the world and formed part of a sound track to my travel diary. Some of their songs remind me of the far flung place I first heard them in. Of people I thought I’d forgotten. Of landscapes seen from buses and trains blurring through a window.
“I’m going missing for a while, I’ve got nothing left to lose”
For a moment I was that girl again. Twenty something. Carefree. Thin!
It was a great night. Maximo Park were just as I remembered them… passionate, lively, engaging… They haven’t changed at all.
But I sure have!