London 8th November 2002 - Marquee
When Jesus Jones announce a gig like this, it doesn't matter what the cost or effort will be in getting there, it just matters that you're there. It was to be my 25th time of seeing the band and it was pretty apt that the gig was to be captured for a DVD release. You knew it was going to be something special and a lasting reminder of my own personal silver jubilee of live shows.
So off we set at 12.30pm to make the 450 mile round trip from Devon to the big capital. Hoping to hit the city centre at rush hour, knowing that all the traffic would be heading out, worked a treat. Practically a straight drive to Islington and after circling the centre once or twice we managed to locate a car park that didn't require a mortgage to park. Right, just time to catch a bite to eat and then get to the venue. My memory might not be what it was but I'm sure the last time I went to the Marquee it was somewhere else in London and didn't look like this one!! After a short queue we ambled in. There was definately an air of anticipation around and everyone was expecting something special.
We went upstairs and I introduced myself to Andy on the merchandise stall. Having communicated with Andy by e-mail it was nice to see the face behind the name. Being a band isn't just about the five guys on stage. Without the support and work of the backroom people the band's job would be twice as hard. They all do a great job in promoting and making things go smoothly for the band. Anyway, after purchasing the new single and a nice top it was time to enter the main hall. It was smaller than I thought it was going to be but it was arranged so that a great view would be gotten wherever you stood.
We took up a spot on the barrier at the front. Prime viewing spot and just right for getting some nice photos I hoped. The venue gradually filled up as Iain played his usual blend of diverse tunes to set the scene nicely. 8.30pm the band were due on and it was fast approaching. The camermen were testing their gear and finetuning equipment. It was then that I thought about the part that the crowd had to play in the evening's events. The band have to put on the best show on the night for the camera, the cameras have to capture all the action and the crowd has to provide the atmosphere to relay the experience of the night onto the eventual DVD. Looking around, the crowd appeared to be a mixture of old fans and newer fans.
8.30 came and the CD Iain had left running, whilst he prepared to go on stage, was switched off. The stage darkened and out walked Iain and Tony to a rousing welcome. Followed swiftly by Mike, Jerry and Al the opening tones of Zeroes And Ones hit the air. As the band cruised into the next number, Move Mountains, it was clear that the Jesus Jones live experience was still one of the best experiences there has been over the last 13 years of their existence.
International Bright Young Thing was greeted by a huge cheer and the floor began to shake as the crowd got their dancing shoes going. Al had an unusual hat on which I thought must have some practical use such as stopping the sweat from dripping down from his shiny napper. Mike had a very dapper shirt number on. Iain, Jerry and Tony all had plain t-shirts which would get darker as the night went on and the temperature increased. Time to get Iain's vocal chords a go as he provided the opening to Caricature.
The night was racing along as we had The Next Big Thing, The Devil You Know and then the new single In The Face Of All Of This. The crowd was appreciating every song equally, old or new. It didn't matter. Bring It On Down was unleashed next, followed by All The Answers, Chemical #1 and Come On Home which I think is great live. This is available on the Best Of and is worthy of a release itself.
Next came the song that broke the band in America, Right Here Right Now. Mike mentioned that the setlist had been opened up to the fans via websites and chatrooms and we were promised some more unusual tracks that don't get played live that often. That was backed up by playing Are You Satisfied? a B-Side song last played on the Doubt tour as far as I'm aware. The temperature was getting to boiling point and what better way to cool off with the slower tempoed Welcome Back Victoria. If that was a respite then the next song was totally the opposite, Message from the London album rocked the place as did Never Enough which came next.
The band were getting wetter, clothes were coming off and Iain was stalking the stage in his usual unimitable style. Occasional chants of Jerry Springer inspired "Jerry, Jerry" filled the air between songs which seemed to amuse the band slightly! If you've watched Jesus Jones before you'll know that most sets are about an hour and contain about 15 songs well we were up to 16 songs already and as Mike said this is the longest they'd played.
Announcing The Rocket Ships Of La Jolla as one of band's faves from the London album they followed it with another song from the same album, Half Up The Hill. Back to the 90's next and it was time to get Real Real Real and then to be going Nowhere Slow, fittingly apt for the traffic in London. Next the house nearly came down as the song that started it all off, Info Freako, belted out and the crowd went mad. The cheers after the song ended were deafening and I mean deafening. The noise was distorting in my ears! The ovation continued as Who? Where? Why? was introduced as being the last song.
Leaving the stage to more deafening applause, I wondered how this would all translate onto the DVD, if it was only half as good it would be very good! As everyone regrouped the band appeared again and it was back to the Doubt encore opener Trust Me to sap the crowd's energy once more. Next was a real treat for me to hear Cut And Dried played live, it is a fave of mine and the first time I've heard it live. Would there be a Blissed ending as so effectively used on the Doubt tour? No chance of anything so sedate, it was to be Idiot Stare as a lot of people had guessed. Ending the show the band exited one by one and Iain finally taking a bow in front of an appreciative audience. I think the band really appreciated the crowd and it was mutual, let's hope the cameramen did their part and we see the result on DVD next year.
As the lights came up and we realised that after 25 songs and 105 minutes it had finally come to an end we filtered out into the cool air. Passing Andy on the way out I would have said bye but he had his hands full dealing with punters eager to pick up a momento of the night. A result all round and a great night. Driving out of London the traffic was busier than earlier, Nowhere Slow started to ring in my ears and the night was complete.
Wouldn't it be a shame if the footage wasn't any good and they had to do it all again??!!
More pictures can be found at the bottom of the page...
Zeroes And Ones
International Bright Young Thing
The Next Big Thing
The Devil You Know
In The Face Of All Of This
Bring It On Down
All The Answers
Come On Home
Right Here Right Now
Are You Satisfied?
Welcome Back Victoria
The Rocket Ships Of La Jolla
Half Up The Hill
Real Real Real
Who? Where? Why?
Cut And Dried