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Timo Tolkki - Water Rats, London, 7/3/2002

  by Olga Sladeckova

published: 22 / 3 / 2002

Timo Tolkki - Water Rats, London, 7/3/2002


After nearly a year of delays, Freeheat finally released their debut EP 'Retox' in Britain in February, and to celebrate the band went out on the road to play a three date British mini tour. Olga Sladeckova writes about the band's London gig

The ‘Retox’ EP , the debut release of London based band Freeheat, finally came out in the UK on the 18th February, after contractual problems lead to its delay for nearly a year. To celebrate its arrival, the band have arranged three British gigs, and after blowing Sheffield and Liverpool’s fans away with their music, are concluding their mini tour by playing the Water Rats in the King’s Cross area of London tonight. It takes about 5 minutes to get into to the pub. It is a real squeeze because the venue is completely packed. I would love to tell you , if there was any specification, what kinds of fans Freeheat have ,, but it’s a real mixture consisting of brand new fans and over excited Japanese kids as well as ever faithful Jesus and Mary Chain addicts. The concert hall fills up to breaking point when Freeheat come on the stage shortly after 10 pm. Romi Mori (formerly of the Gun Club), Nick Sanderson (ex-member of Earl Brutus), and Jim Reid and Ben Lurie (who were both in the Jesus And Mary Chain) walk on the stage to loud clapping and excited shouting from the audience. The first song, ‘Baby G’, gives out the music direction we will be taking tonight. It’s dense, loud and inspiring, and with robust guitar work from Ben, Jim and Romi, throws us straight forward into the Freeheat experience. People swing and jump to the rhythm of the following song ‘What Goes Round’. Freeheat don’t seem to be satisfied, however, with the sound and between songs keep on checking all the wires leading from their guitars and microphones. Not that it matters with the wild jungle of sounds that this band creates. ‘Facing Up To The Facts’ , the second track o f ‘Retox’, comes directly from the Jesus And Mary Chain’s blood. The massive sound of guitars stretches across the concert hall and swallows everything standing in its way. “I’m facing up to the facts” claims Jim as we are carried away, lost in the maze of the song’s sound. ‘Shine On Little Star’, another of the songs from ’Retox’ ,starts gently with Jim singing against a seemingly quiet backdrop. Both, however,build massively in strength when Jim finally asks: “Could you be the one?” As far as tonight’s crowd at the Water Rats is concerned every single person is the one for Freeheat. ‘The Two Of Us’ , the third song they play fromn “Retox’ and ‘K Moon’ round this musical adventure off uniquely and calm the atmosphere down. The band then thanks the audience and leaves the stage. Is that it? “Nooo! We want more!” demand the fans. After a few minutes of loud screaming, Freeheat can no longer handle resist this invitation and delightedly return on the stage. Whoops! It’s 11 pm, and time to close the venue. The microphones get switched off and it doesn’t matter if you are somebody who came to see the band or Jim Reid himself. The Water Rats doesn’t differentiate and and will chase you out anyway. Maybe though that is y good. A beautiful dream flew away, but remains pictured in our memories. So, I guess I will just go home now and play the bootleg I made tonight. It was definitely worth taping it. The Set List: Baby G What Goes Around Back On The Water The Story So Far Facing Up To The Facts Virtually Unreal Shine On Little Star Got On Home Fucked Up Lover The Two Of Us K Moon

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Timo Tolkki - Water Rats, London, 7/3/2002

Timo Tolkki - Water Rats, London, 7/3/2002

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Interview (2002)
Timo Tolkki - Interview
Ex Jesus and Mary Chain members Jim Reid and Ben Lurie formed a new band Freeheat at the end of 1999. In an exclusive interview with Olga Sladeckova, they talk about their much delayed debut Ep "Retox' , touring and their first two years.

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