Astoria, London, 5/6/2006
published: 22 /
Late to a show by her favourite band, Olga Sladeckova nevertheless finds Primal Scream worth the hassle when she goes to see them at the Astoria in London
Imagine your favourite ever band are playing a gig tonight. You have got a ticket, work is over and now you just need to get ready while you listen to their great music.
In my case that favourite band are Primal Scream. It’s the 6th April and they are playing at the London Astoria tonight. Even though it’s bound to be a very sweaty night I still go through all the effort of having a shower, washing my hair and dressing up. Basically all the stuff that is completely pointless when you are aiming for the very front rows just like I am tonight.
I make it to the venue just after 9 pm and Primal Scream are already on the stage! In desperation I run for the bar and order 2 white wines (I have no time to go back later so 2 should do for the night). I get served instead 2 red wines, but there is no time to be wasted. I pour them both into a pint cup and head for the front. It turns out the back line fans are not the friendliest. It is very difficult to get through them. Unfortunately for all of us my red pint keeps getting spilled… By the time I hit the front rows it is gone and so is its plastic cup...
Primal Scream are just starting their next song ‘Kill All Hippies’. Light at the background of the stage flashes in fast speed and the band hit their instruments hard. The crowd behind me are going ecstatic. The aggressive music gets hold of the whole venue with people jumping and dancing to it. A few fans get squashed right up against the barriers between the auditorium and stage but they don’t seem to mind.
The front is mostly filled with sweaty men. During the next song, however, I am hit by a shower of water out of nowhere right in my face. It’s nothing unusual. At least I don’t have to worry about getting wet any more.
‘Medication’ and ‘Kowalski’ are other Primal Scream classics and are both welcomed with loud applause from the fans. ‘Swastika Eyes’ brings out the best of the stage lighting. All the lights are flicking at the fastest speed in which lead singer Bobby Gillespie, dancing all around the stage, looks as if he is in a broken up cartoon. You do envy him all that space on the stage he gets while his flock of fans fight for every square centimetre in the auditorium.
It’s getting later and you can see the fans are exhausted. I feel a bit like a footballer playing centre midfield for a whole game. You're tired but somehow you just can’t stop.
Just before 10pm Primal Scream announce ‘Movin On Up’ as the last song of the main set. Bobby invites the whole venue to clap along to the song’s rhythm and everyone joins in. “I’m getting out of darkness, my love shines on, I’m getting out of darkness…” everyone sings while the lights light up the whole auditorium.
It doesn’t take long for the fans to convince the band to play some more music. The next song is called ‘Slip Inside This House’. Not many people appear to know it. It is the second track on 'Screamadelica', but this, however, is a very different version and has a different tune to it and leaves us, the fans, a little confused. The following song ‘Accelerator’ is much more popular. Fans around me get back to their manic jumping and heat up the front lines to boiling again.
The band make another attempt to leave the stage. Once again it doesn’t take long for them to reappear to the great excitement of the faithful but shattered fans. The whole set and night is ended by a new song called ‘Country Girl’. The song has not come out yet but everyone seems to know it well and to sing along with Bobby, who has how by now lost it completely and even disappears down to the floor for a few seconds.
This is really it. We get a last wave from the band. 2 pairs of drums stick are thrown into the audience and the night is over.
The next chance to see Primal Scream will be on the 2nd July at Hyde Park supporting the Who.
Have a Listen:-