Mega Gig Catch-up Post
By James | Aug 19th, 2011 | Live Music |
I have been a negligent blogger. The last gig I blogged was Moby back at the start of June. The start of June was a pretty long time ago. It has been fortunate then (in this context and this context alone) that this has hardly been a vintage summer of gigging for me. For the first time since my mid-teens I did not set foot on festival turf once and I can count the gigs I covered on one hand. Ergo, catching up on all the related blogging should be a relatively zippy affair. For added convenience I’ll whiz through them all in one post…
Bright Eyes / Gruff Rhys @ Royal Albert Hall
This was a bit of a treat really considering I was not going to Glasto and this was a Glasto warm-up for all the acts involved (including the delicious Jenny & Johnny who I caught the end of but was not early enough to photograph). Was also the first gig outing for my newly acquired 24-70mm 2.8 Sigma lens, which I took the opportunity to road test during Gruff Rhys’ predictably inspiring set. It’s undoubtedly widened my range, but feels restrictive in others, focusing especially. Still finding my feet with it now really. Bright Eyes sounded great, really confident, not out of place in this opulent, cavernous setting, but the lighting was APPALLING. Just beyond awful. Ho hum.
Ed Sheeran @ Scala
Was vaguely aware of this boy and his charms before I went and he satisfied expectations even if he failed to make a deep impression. As far as shooting at the Scala goes, this was a fairly good experience. There was a pit, room to move due to lack of other photographers (this was his second night there) and acceptable lights. A win, then.
Avi Buffalo @ Scala
Ed Sheeran luck was not to continue. There was no pit. I chose the wrong side of the stage so had the worst possible line of sight to the main man, Avi. Lighting was pitiful. Too much dry ice. Security waded in to pull me out after first 3 (unusual, in my experience, for a gig with no pit). Photography-wise it was probably the worst gig I have ever done. Pffft.
My Morning Jacket / The Head & The Heart @ Somerset House
The closest I got to a festival this year was the open air Somerset House series. It is am amazing place to see a show too. Seeing Sigur Ros there the other year will stay with me forever. And, unexpectedly really, My Morning Jacket’s opening salvo matched that experience. They were just so intense and unrestrained and hungry from the off. Beautifully crafted, immaculately played and inventively arranged songs too. Really pleased I had the opportunity to stay and watch them for a while after shooting. Shooting itself was a challenge, but bore fruit. It also resulted in my first national newspaper publication, when one of my photos adorned The Independent’s review.
So this story does have a happy ending…