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Thursday, June 12, 2008

Bon Jovi at Southampton

Last night I went to see Bon Jovi play at St. Mary's Stadium in Southampton - it was the first UK date of their Lost Highway Tour.

My wife Jo and I don't really share the same tastes in music, she likes unbearable cat stranglers like Westlife and Enrique Iglesias, and I like bearable but LOUD cat stranglers like Muse, Metallica and Nightwish. Bon Jovi manage to sit in the very small overlap in our tastes, jostling for space on a tiny soft rock ledge with bands like the Kaiser Chiefs and the Hoosiers.

I bought us seated tickets for the event, but this turned out to be a mistake as the organisers seemed to get a bit confused, and when we arrived it turned out that my tickets were for seats that were actually behind the stage. Exactly what sort of spectacle they were hoping to provide when all we could see was the back of a speaker stack was unclear. Luckily the marshals didn't seem too bothered by us moving around, so when the band started playing we moved to stand in a walkway where could see as well as hear them.

(more pics on the St. Mary's site)

A local band kicked things off (Hours Til Autumn), and they actually did a pretty good job, especially since this was their first gig with more than a 100 people (29,000 in the stadium). The big disappointment was with the major support act - The Feeling are supporting Bon Jovi for half of their UK gigs, and we were hoping for a surprise support act in Southampton (Nickelback did the honours for them back in 2006, and Razorlight are doing their Ireland dates, so we had high hopes). Sadly the surprise was that there was no support act at all, and Bon Jovi came on cold at 8pm.

It was a good set, with just the right mix of classic stuff from their big 80's and 90's albums, and the better new songs from the Lost Highways album, but without a big support act out front they started pretty slowly, and it took a good hour for things to really get going.

The last hour was damn fine though and they managed to lift the stadium despite the drizzle. In fact I've caught myself humming a number of embarrassing soft rock classics this morning, so something must have clicked :-)

So a good night, even if the stadium should be ashamed of selling unusable seats (especially when the event wasn't sold out!), and even if Bon Jovi had to be their own warm up artists. If you're thinking of getting tickets for any of there other gigs - go for the ones where The Feeling are playing. Not only will you get an extra hour of crooning, but you're more likely to have got into the swing of things by the time Bon Jovi start their set.

1 comment:

FactoBrunt said...

# Your love is like baaaaad medicine... bad medicine is what I need, woo hoo #

# Shot through the heart and your to blame... you give love a baaaad name #

My sis was there, actually. We got her tickets for her birthday. She was in the golden circle right down the front, so I guess she got a view a bit like your picture.