German TV “WDR” Records “The Crossroads Festival”
with HUNDRED SEVENTY SPLIT For The "Rockpalast"
October 22, 2011 – at “Harmonie”, Bonn, Germany
venue has the finest acoustics and a good stage area. The main floor is
packed this evening. There are four to six cameras operating, filming
Hundred Seventy Split for the famous "Rockpalast".
Two of the cameras are
television station size. The
one on my far left is on a short track, for close-ups or longer shots as
other stationary camera is located at the back of the room, it operates
just above the heads of the audience, giving the performance a more
smoke machine will soon be working overtime, and a steam cloud will
permeate the entire room, reducing visibility to an uncomfortable level.
There are at least two remote cameras in action, located at opposite ends of the stage, missing nothing, capturing every little idiosyncrasy.
Hundred Seventy Split is in full focus. There’s no doubt in anyone’s mind
that the group will give an outstanding performance as usual.
These are professionals, the best in the business. They have full control
When we arrived the place was already full, there was only one way to go,
and that was up.
approached the manager, explained who we were and asked his permission to
enter the balcony area, whose staircase was roped off. He said no problem
and I thanked him. This offered Brigitte the perfect vantage point for
taking photos. We
had the entire loft almost to ourselves. Occasionally, a random
photographer entered, did his work, watched a little of the concert, and
then drifted back downstairs again. Brigitte had full access. As for me,
top row seat, higher than the intrusive guard rail and in complete
privacy for writing my notes. The man who gave us his permission watched
Brigitte doing her work as she moved quickly, quietly and carefully
around the cables for the show.
“The Fabulous Penetrators” is a London based band, who were
called into action at the very last moment. They put on a good show,
entertaining the audience and having a great time on stage. Passing along
a bottle of whisky to each band member. Their style
is a mixture of rock and punk. Very enjoyable to listen to.
Liam Casey - vocals
Crispin Weir - guitar
Clement C-Colom - bass, vocals
Joao Felzardo - drums
Hundred Seventy Split - The Band:
three are professionals and went through their paces with ease and
Leo Lyons' exquisite bass playing along with his visual dexterity and
contagious smile says it all. He lives to perform and pleasing people. He
is the highly respected, proven veteran, with a long time of experience,
but always evolving by setting new goals and reaching new heights.
Although he is well-known for his unique “Leo Lyons Style” of playing the
bass with Ten Years After, he is stunning the audience with a huge
variety of modern, fresh and vibrant riffs while playing with Hundred
Sawyer is a professional drummer who operates has his own recording
studio, and can play any style of music. He’s a very friendly chap.
Gooch, on stage is one cool musician. He’s a good guitarist, an
entertaining performer, and yet still retains that likeable shyness.
Combine this with the personality of a perfectionist and you’ll find that
it’s quite an extraordinary combination.
band starts off fast and strong. On top of the music and working off of
There’s a few technical glitches with Joe’s amplifier, he squats down and
tries to adjust it. He
continues playing right in time with music, never skipping a beat.
Through most of the first song Joe battles with this unruly amplifier. It
was how he handled the situation that earned my respect and the audiences
empathy. He kept his cool, tried to resolve the annoying technical
problems and in the end, he came out looking like the mature professional
musician that he is. I also said to Joe, no one would know any of this
ever happened on the soundtrack. I hope that made him feel a little
better. No one is going to criticise him for something that he had no
control over. At one point Leo moved a little closer to Joe’s side of the
stage, offering some much needed moral support, which is exactly how you
would expect Leo to respond. Leo also gave Joe enough space to deal with
the equipment glitches, on his own and in his own way. When the song was
finished, Joe apologized to the very patient audience to which he
received a sympathetic round of applause. Later on, towards the end of
the second set, the band played the first song all over again, this time
perfectly. Everyone in the audience gave the entire band, a thunderous
round of applause. Strong affection was apparent between band and
audience, something special was now in the air tonight.
announced that they would be doing two sets this evening, with a twenty
minute break in between. The band could cool down and change clothes if
necessary, the audience for their part could do what they needed to do,
and the camera crew could re-group and set up for the second half of the
show. The cameras were not affecting the performance. Although one camera
man was almost sharing Damon’s drum stool with him - he was that close.
I remember correctly, Damon told me later on, that at one point there
were two camera-men one on each side of him. Damon and I both found some
humour in that image. He could have easily knocked out two cameramen at
the same time with one sporadic flailing of arms.
first set, from start to finish was a real challenge, but when all was
said and done, the audience was amply rewarded. The band could not have
been anymore impressive, brilliant, or better executed, even the face of
sudden adversity. They came through it with flying colours.
band returned more relaxed, refreshed and ready to show what they were
really made of. They gave it everything they had and never looked back. I
am only able to describe it as a run away locomotive on a single track –
barrelling along towards the finish line. With a full head of steam they
took no prisoners, warning whistle blowing - get out of their way, coming
through. Whatever pep talk they all gave to each other backstage, right
now everyone was in top form, rocking and rolling. The band was in
charge. Leo its driving force. Joe the captain Damon in the engine room
powering it along.
Deal – Where The Blues Began – The World Won’t
Stop - All
My Yesterday’s – Yes Man – Going Home – Let The
River Flow - Poison – Bad Blood – The Smoke - A
Promise Is Forever – Wish You Were At Woodstock
Encore: La Grange - Where The Blues Began
The Fabulous Penetrators
Many Thanks to Anita Ranisch for
her excellent photos