I had a notion that this could actually be shit.
Not that I dislike Sleaford Mods, on the contrary. My concern was Sleaford Mods playing an Arena. Would the intimacy of the Mods carry through?
Whatever, I had the tickets and was going anyway. One of my friends had asked me if I could escort his son to the Concert, and me being me, I didn't refuse.
Pre concert, we diverted down Sneinton to have a Saturday night beer with our friends Tony & Reeta at One BC. Nottingham's finest bespoke fashion institute. A single Heineken downed over a 10 minute chat before we made our way to the Arena.
All covid checks completed on the door and in we went. Already the sound of Warmduscher, a London Post Punk band, was reverberating round the stairs into the what seems like cavernous arena.
I have to say that I had never heard of the band, but the Sunday following the gig, their Vinyls were ordered. This band are awesome, without taking themselves too serious, an absolute blast. Post Punk with every other type of music thrown in the mix somewhere.
We were at the front, left of centre, away from the mosh pit (Too old for that now), and the sound or acoustics of the Arena were actually very good.
Next one to the stage was Billy no mates. We have followed this young ladies journey for quite a while now, and she did not disappoint. First time hearing her live and very very good. Jason made a guest appearance on Supermarket sweep, to the delight of the crowd, bit of a tease to be honest. Her album gets spun regularly at HQ.
I wasn't leaving this spot for the duration of the night, barring the obligatory toilet and bar visit. It was all going so well.
Next up were Dry Cleaning. I have to admit right here that I have tried to listen to this bands music, but it has just not worked for me.
But tonight changed my opinion. I 100% got this band. Live, they are incredible. The guitarist smashing the riffs apart and the subtle delights of the ladies voice piercing through. Maybe for me, they are a live band, go give them a listen.
There now followed a lull while waiting Jason & Andrew to hit the stage, at this point the crowd were more than ready. You could feel it. Looking round at the crowd, there was such a mix of people. Young, old and every manner of music listening people, a real mixed crowd, all probably wondering how good the Mods would sound in this huge arena.
And on they came.
Should I write one of those Guardian esque reviews? Jason spitting lyrics and twirling while Andrew does his classic jigging about? No, they don't deserve it.
They deserve you going to watch them live.
Guest appearances from Billy No mates and Amy Taylor just made the whole concert.
I was that taken by the whole night, I could easily have followed it up the next night and done it all again, if they had done it. It was that amazing!
So yes, Sleaford Mods can do an Arena and yes, it still felt intimate.
Walking back up to the Lace Market to catch the tram, it seemed everyone was on full buzz from the Concert. We caught the tram back to Beeston, to get my friends son home, tabs ringing, on a full natural high. As we left Wilford Lane tram stop, I said to my friends son "Are we on the wrong tram?" I had never caught the tram back to to this side of town before. The next stop wasn't the one we were expecting so we got off and started the long walk back, Vinyl in hand, freezing our nuts off while trying to get a Cab, and trying to ring his dad.
An epic night. Thanks to all the bands.
And yes, it's taken me this long to write this up.
Gutted I didn’t get to this gig, sounded epic 😎