At last, the Biscuit ventured South again, and by god, was it ever worth the wait.
Wonderful. Absolutely goddamn superb. It says something about HMHB that even without playing some of the real uptempo crowd-pleasers (I'm thinking of the likes of PRS Yearbook, A Country Practice, Broadstairs, Paintball's Coming Home, Vagaries) they can still blow the audience away in the way they managed last night.
Although I didn't spot any ear trumpets or zimmer frames, I think it's fair to say that the average age of the audience was marginally higher than that of the Leeds festival crowd that I was part of last weekend. Spotted a couple of pairs of oven gloves being thrust in the air during the relevant song, saw a few DPAK's, spent half the gig down in the moshpit with my brother (an HMHB virgin but now completely hooked), met the legendary Geoff, but it was all over far too quickly.
The highlights for me were storming performances of "Everything's A.O.R." & "Vitas Gerulaitis" and a blistering cover of Magazine's "Shot By Both Sides" during the encore, but there were countless memorable moments to take away from the evening; Nigel messing up the words during "Wrong Grave" and then taking the piss out of himself....the crowd launching into a stirring rendition of "Albert Hammond Bootleg"....Nigel's complete failure to get the portable CD player to work while attempting to demonstrate which songs were on the I-pod of the garage attendant in "24 Hour Garage People" (for the record, amongst them were Boston's "More Than A Feeling", "Cold As Ice" by Foreigner, and "Mr Blue Sky" - one for Mr Taylor there methinks. Oh, and it was £1.03 for the Pringles - obviously our Nige hasn't seen the prices in Cambridge!)
Didn't manage to lay my hands on a set list, but I think I can remember all the songs performed, though definitely not in the right order:
Corgi Registered Friends
Running Order Squabble Fest
Outbreak of Vitas Gerulaitis
Monmore Hare's Running
Vatican Broadside (with an intro of The Who's "Substitute")
Bob Wilson - Anchorman
Light At The End Of The Tunnel
Tending The Wrong Grave For 23 Years
A Shropshire Lad
Joy Division Oven Gloves
Used To Be In Evil Gazebo
Botleneck At Capel Curig
Hair Like Brian May Blues
Shit Arm, Bad Tattoo
The Bastard Son Of Dean Friedman/Best Things In Life
For What Is Chatteris (naturally!)
24 Hour Garage People
Shot By Both Sides
Venus In Flares
We Built This Village On A Trad. Arr. Tune
You're in for a treat in Bilston tonight.