Moody Blues - New Theatre, Oxford.

Ozexpat

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Bloody hell guys ! Fix the friggin' aircon !

To be fair, the stiflingly hot venue actually added to the party atmosphere of the first gig of the most recent tour of the old gits that are the Moody Blues. At 53, I felt quite young in the company of the audience. But not as old as the drummer Graeme Edge. He recently spent his 72nd birthday on a Carribean Prog Cruise in March.

Justin Hayward and John Lodge looked little different from their late 70s personas, but seemed (especially Lodge) to lurch about in caricature "drug addled rock star" stylee. Haircuts were a giveaway to their vintage. Dad jeans and t-shirts signalled a generic age group beyond "young". Nothing very surprising about that, you say. Except that they performed like a bunch of young dudes in the first flush.

OK, they didn't jump around much. But they never did, even in their pomp. It was a consumate performance, although not without some "oops" moments. Edge lost his way during a less than complex section of an old standard "I'm Just a Singer (In a Rock 'n Roll Band), then the "main" drummer did the same in "Questions". This was easily dismissed as "1st night of the tour nerves" and didn't take anything away from the night.

The mix of "very" old and not so old stuff was well thought out. Starting with Patrick Moraz era (80s) Gemini Dream, The Voice and I Know Your Out There Somewhere was pure genious. This was followed by some late 60s gems such as Candle of Life and Higher & Higher (lead taken by Graeme Edge in some seriously bad acrylic trousers).

40 minutes in and the grandads needed a rest.

The 20 min interval disappeared quicker than the queue to the gents (lots of prostate issues) and extortionate icecream did. But when they returned.....wow !!! They seriously upped (or rather settled into) their performance. Classic after classic just flowed. Everybody knew the words, and despite the average age, the crowd gave their all. This was repayed by fantastic renditions of Go Now, The Dream, all extended versions and then of course the standard Nights in White Satin. This ended the main proceedings.

After a rapturous response from the audience, they returned with an extended version of Ride My See-Saw. The audience (along with Mrs Expat and I) went ballistic. The guys then returned for a non musical curtain call. It was welcomed, although, one more song would have been a more suitable ending.

The backing musos were brilliant. An attractive young lady playing flute/acoustic guitar/backing vocals. Another female sax/keysboard/vocals, eccentic dude on drums and percussion, and a veeeery young keyboard player, rounded out a fat and sumptuous sound.

All in all, a great concert. Not just a retrospective or "reliving your youth" gig, but a really well thought out musical journey.

 
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SergeAuckland

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Thanks for the review, Terry. I didn't know they were touring and I've booked for their Ipswich date.

There's a certain irony that I never managed to see very many of my favourite bands when I (and they) were young, but seeing more now that we're both past our best. Saw Ginger Baker earlier this week- surprised he's still alive (as he is!), must be chemically preserved.

S.

 

lstanley

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Sounds like a great night. I've been rediscovering my teen love of the Moodies in the past few months. Mainly because I'm a cheapskate and Amazon had their first 5 albums going for the price of a pint and a massage. Maybe they'll visit Bangkok? Usually no trouble with aircon in venues here.

You have a great signature by the way. Although personally I prefer irony.

 

SergeAuckland

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I saw them last night in Ipswich. A pretty good show, but I really do wish PA was better. I can follow Lodge's bass lines on CD, but not live. A lot of what they played was just a loud mush.

I agree that Ray Thomas's replacement was very much better looking!

It's good that these guys are still touring and seem to be having a good time of it. Whether they're doing it for the money or the kicks I don't know, and really don't care, they gave a good show and it was worth the price.

The Ipswich audience were pretty much all of a certain age, but it didn't stop them dancing in the aisles.

S.

 

Jelly Tussle

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I saw them last night in Ipswich. A pretty good show, but I really do wish PA was better. I can follow Lodge's bass lines on CD, but not live. A lot of what they played was just a loud mush.I agree that Ray Thomas's replacement was very much better looking!

It's good that these guys are still touring and seem to be having a good time of it. Whether they're doing it for the money or the kicks I don't know, and really don't care, they gave a good show and it was worth the price.

The Ipswich audience were pretty much all of a certain age, but it didn't stop them dancing in the aisles.

S.
Glad you had a good time! :^

It's a shame that I've only just read this thread; as I would have love to have gone and I only live twenty or so miles down the road :(

I presume it was at the Regent? I used to go there a lot in my younger days when it was The Gaumont. I saw The Enid, Southside Johnny, Hawkwind, Black Sabbath, Lloyd Cole and many other bands there - great memories.

Oh well, maybe the next time the moodies play there, I'll get to hear about it before the gig!

 

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