Frank Turner @ TivoliVredenburg, Utrecht
The Sunday of January 10, 2016 will remain in history as the day that Major Tom, Thin White Duke, Ziggy Stardust (and some other characters) passed away (you can read here our thoughts about David Bowie).
For us though, until the next morning that we learned the news, this Sunday was special for another reason. We were, at last, about to see Frank Turner and his sleeping souls live. We traveled back to Utrecht and to the amazing multi-venue TivoliVredenburg, where Frank Turner not only was playing at the main stage, but the concert was sold out as well.
At this point, we feel obligated to mention that a sold out concert did not mean overcrowding, unbearable heat and sweat and a mix of unacceptable conditions, like the ones we have all experienced in the past. In this case, it meant the sale of the right number of tickets for all of us to be able to have a good time. To absolutely enjoy the thing that everyone paid for and have enough room to dance.
Since early on, we were outside of the venue to drink the necessary beers at Tivoli’s nice bar. Half an hour before the start, we moved on to secure a good spot for Frank.
About 21:00, the lights go off and he, along with the sleeping souls, came on stage, beginning with the new The Next Storm. The sound was perfect, the band was solid and he in front of us smiling (like always) and singing, with his voice being the same as in the studio. All the above launched the enthusiasm of the crowd to very high levels instantly. The whole of Tivoli did not waste time and with one voice started signing “But I don't want spend the whole of my life indoors...Laying low, waiting on the next storm»! By then, we all had the smile of Turner on our faces too, at a night that could not have begun any better.
Further on with, my personal favorite, I Am Disappeared and the amazing lyrics of raw realism activating endless feelings in us. I was watching left and right friends and couples hugging and singing loud every lyric. Everybody was suddenly one big company.
With no pause at all, the concert continues with The Road, Losing Days and other songs from the whole of Turner’s discography. His smile was getting bigger, when he was not signing, until he says a big thank you to everyone for the atmosphere that has been created. That was the first live for him post the end-of-year holidays. It is by far the biggest and the best that they have done in this country, based on his comments.
After 11 songs, the band goes away. Frank takes his acoustic guitar and, alone by now, without the protection of his friends, he starts unfolding his soul with St. Christopher Is Coming Home, a song that was dedicated to his close people that he leaves behind so often to be on the road.
Then, Tell Tale Signs, which was a request by a fan. Probably the most intense moment of the whole concert, with the crowd participating again.
How much power can a voice and a guitar have??
In total, 10 more songs were played, before he and the band went offstage for the traditional encore. The latter included 4 songs, with the last being Four Simple Words!
I want to dance…
Panic, with everyone wasting whatever strength was left. Turner throws down his guitar, jumps to the crowd and participates in this feast with us until the end.
Back to the stage, a bow to the audience and many thank you’s with an expression that indicates gratitude for the night that we offered him! Something that we barely see from any other artist.
We left and the first thing we did was to see which are the next stops in his tour, in case we had some spare time to catch him up again somewhere in Europe. Cause one time was certainly not enough!