The English Beat - Showcase Live, Foxboro, MA 9/9/2011
The English Beat
Showcase Live, Foxboro MA
Thursday September 8, 2011
The English Beat are still at it, and seeming to have a fun time while doing it.
One could argue the band was popular in the early 80's, releasing records and touring to ravenous audiences and considering they disbanded by 1983 (I'd have been 13) the chance for me to see them live wouldn't occur until last night.
There are two touring versions of the band, this features guitarist/vocalist Dave Wakeling and no other original members that I am aware of.
Arriving at the club I was able to secure a very close spot, so close I could rest my beverage right underneath bassist Wayne Lothian's monitor. After a little bit of a wait, the band took the stage. Dave looked great, a little fuller perhaps, but still looked healthy and was in good spirits. He was chatty the entire night, hardly a song was not given a little back story. They opened with “Whine & Grine/Stand Down Margaret” and played a seemingly extended version of it. Once completed Dave talked about how it was about Margaret Thatcher (former Prime Minister of England) and she was the only one in the world that would not remember that she once was Prime Minister. They'd tackle a bunch of songs off their debut “I Just Can't Stop It” and that was fine with me, as it is one of my favorite records. “Rough Rider”, “Click Click”, “Hands off She's Mine”, “Twist and Crawl”, “Rankin Full Stop”, Can't Get Used to Losing You” were tight and spirited versions. They did the Smokey Robinson cover “Tears of a Clown” to a wonderful response and personal favorite “Best Friend” sounded pretty good, but I wanted that bit more fro the guitars on that great hook. Perhaps I was too close, but the horns, drums and keyboards all filled room wonderfully. Antonee First Class provided many backing vocals and would rap and skat song from time to time as well. Most seemed to be made up on the fly as he name checked the city, town, venue etc.
Yes, we got “Mirror in the Bathroom” at the end, was a great way to bring the night full circle.
They played for over 90 minutes and once done they took to the front of the stage to shake hands and wave thanks.
As fans headed to the lobby and the merchandise table each mutter was more positive than the last. At the start of the show Dave mentioned the room is/was one of the best sounding rooms they'd played. He is right, the venue does it right, great sight lines, wide open spaces, tables if you want to sit,bathrooms you are not scared to use. I hope the venue continues to book bands that I care for (plus the 20 minute ride to/from and free parking..aces!)
There were a few tired moms and dads at the bus stop Friday morning I'll bet.
I try not to have my phone out much, but here are a few shots (hence the lack of professionalism)
Dave pretty much played this guitar all night, he was animated and bounced around in front of his microphone.
This is just a shot I took while we waited for the band to come on stage. It was the lights on the stage that gave it the cool look.
Labels: live review