Open Fire !

Now that I have managed to open my eyes that little bit more, it is time to pen down my thoughts on yesterday’s gig at Qormi. I had been a bit apprehensive as to whether the show would go on, but a quick call to Kenneth confirmed that despite a bad cough and truly inclement weather in the afternoon, things would go on as planned….‘You don’t think that the water will extinguish FIRE don’t you?’ were his parting words.

That was sweet music to my ears as I had been waiting for this gig for weeks now. Making our way to the festival grounds, I realised that year in , year out , the Lowenbrau script goes unchanged. Same old stalls on the right , new car on the left, being kitted out with some outlandish sound system blaring out (c)rap , same stage on the left for the (supposedly) more popular music , and the same smaller 1565RockStage. Well let me tell you something beer guys….there were FAR more people at the rock stage than at the pop shite stand..so get your priorities right.

Oh, it was organised alright, squeeky clean and all that, but a bit of a change is needed. All in all
though, good family fun is there to be had by everyone…and of course… there is the beer. Yummy!

So let’s move on to the music, because that is what pulled me there. I was a bit worried at my arrival by half-past eight. There was virtually NO-ONE at the stage the band was to play. ‘Ooops…’ said my wife. I assured her that by the time nine o’clock would chime, the rockers would be drawn here like a gnat to an ass! (This was the first time she had seen the band live, and was suitably impressed.)

And sure enough the guys and girls, most of them now recognisable from previous FIRE gigs, began to turn up like bad pennies! By the time the band started, I was in my usual place at the front of the pack. Looking to the back I could see that the crowd was quite sizeable. You simply cannot keep a good rocker away from what he craves…. good old-fashioned rock n’roll….

And as if to defy the weather, the band started off with Stormbringer, a Deep Purple favourite, going on to their ‘Get out of my way’ and progressed on to ‘Grinder’ from Judas Priest. THIS is what we have been waiting for…

Throughout the rest of the set, the crowd was treated to another couple of tracks from their super album ‘IGNITE’ (Manhunter and Taste this Rock n’Roll) as well as various other tracks, namely – SpeedKing , Walking by Myself, Play that funky music, Whole Lotta Rosie , Highway to Hell and the closer Saturday night’s all right for dancing. All in all I felt that there was a better vibe going on than at Marsaxlokk.

While the music was simply great, the set was way too short. I feel that the band’s new direction now should be either to extend their playing time or to organize a concert simply for themselves. For us fans it is disconcerting to see good bands being bogged down by rules such as time constraints or having to pack up their instruments because another band has to play after them. I obviously realise that on this little island of ours, a concert will simply cost too much with little returns. Will people pay to see the big bands play? HELL YES!

On a more positive note, Kenneth announced that FIRE will be opening for Swiss outfit Krokus when the band (led by Marc Storace) will give us their long-awaited concert on the 25th of November. Jot that date down on your diary…FIRE opening for Krokus…or is it Krokus opening for FIRE? Whatever, it will be a thoroughly enjoyable evening!

So hang on to your steel hats guys, the flames are gonna get hotter!

Oh..and did Kenneth mention that the new album is still on sale? Thought so!

Cheers…now where the hell is that CD?

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