Lindisfarne Concert Review

St Bride's Centre, Edinburgh - Wednesday, 29th October 2003

by Jonathan Lee, photos by Ian Elrick

" They did play too loud, apparently, 
and the power was indeed cut off! "

I wasn’t originally intending to attend this show, having already been to some of the shows on this tour and being one of the fortunate people that already had a ticket for the Newcastle one. However, when the announcement about the split came, I decided that I would like to see Lindisfarne for one penultimate time and booked my ticket for Edinburgh. I am quite glad that I did, as it turned out to be quite different to the previous concerts I had attended on the tour. This was largely due to the fact that the venue had apparently installed meters to monitor the noise levels and if they played too loud, the power would be cut off. Billy announced that this was the case early on and I think that many people thought he was joking, but it turned out to be true! Because of being restricted in this way, the set list was changed to include some quieter songs. They also played with less than the full band more than is normally the case.

All five members took to the stage (if it can be called a stage, as it was on the same level as the rest of the room) at the beginning, starting with “Fog On The Tyne”, “Rocking Chair” and “This Too Will Pass”. “Freedom Square” (without Ray, if I remember rightly) followed, including, of course, the restored 3rd verse. Rod, Billy and Dave (i.e. Lindisfarne Acoustic) did two of the quieter songs not present earlier in the tour – “Sundown Station” and “United States Of Mind”. Billy, Ian and Rod performed “Can’t Do Right For Doing Wrong” and then Dave and Ray returned to end the first “spasm” (as Billy sometimes terms it) with “This Guitar Never Lies”, “Under The Promenade” and “Lady Eleanor”. During “Lady Eleanor” it actually happened! They did play too loud, apparently, and the power was indeed cut off!

After the break, the power had been restored. The band started off cautiously with just Billy and Rod playing “Walking Back To Blueberry Hill” (another one not done previously in the tour), after which they gradually added more members. Dave joined Rod and Billy for “Train In E Major”, “Candlelight” and “Happy Birthday Dad”. Ian and Dave’s excellent version of “Winter Song” followed, after which they introduced each other by the correct names (I mention this as at Sheffield and, I think, Derby, Dave introduced Ian as “Lionel Richardson” and Ian retaliated by announcing Dave as “Jason McManus”)!

Next, they risked it with the full band again to finish part 2 with “Ghost In Blue Suede Shoes”, “One Day”, “Meet Me On The Corner”, “Born At The Right Time” and “Run For Home”. The members of Lindisfarne Acoustic returned for an encore of “One More Bottle Of Wine” and all five ended the evening’s entertainment appropriately with “Clear White Light”.

Previously in the tour Billy famously put the capo in the wrong place in “Lady Eleanor” in Durham and started “Meet Me On The Corner” with the wrong harmonica in Newark. He didn’t do either of those things in Edinburgh, but introduced one of the songs from “Here Comes The Neighbourhood” (I can’t quite remember which one) as “another song from Promenade!” this error being amusingly corrected by one audience member.

To me, some of the songs (e.g. “This Too Will Pass” and “Run For Home”) took on an added poignancy, knowing that this was almost the last time that I would see the full band performing them. In my view, Lindisfarne demonstrated yet again, despite the aforementioned problems, that they are a band of true class. They will be sadly missed, although we do still have Lindisfarne Acoustic (at least for a while) and there will be other future projects (e.g. The Ghosts Of Electricity) to look forward to. I am confident, therefore, that even after the final show in Newcastle on 1/11/2003, there will still be “magic in the air!” 

Set List

First Part
Fog On The Tyne
Rocking Chair
This Too Will Pass
Freedom Square
Sundown Station
United States Of Mind
Can’t Do Right For Doing Wrong
This Guitar Never Lies
Under The Promenade
Lady Eleanor

Second Part
Walking Back To Blueberry Hill
Train In E Major
Happy Birthday Dad
Winter Song
Ghost In Blue Suede Shoes
One Day
Meet Me On The Corner
Born At The Right Time
Run For Home

One More Bottle Of Wine
Clear White Light