On April 15, 2006 I saw The Simple Minds live for the first time. They played at Athinon Arena, an indoor venue in Athens. I would get to see them again in Athens 8 years later on an outdoor gig this time, but I chose to revisit that first gig (a sort of "Throwback Thursday" post) for a very specific reason. It was the first time I carried with me any sort of digital equipment to capture part of the gig as I do now with this blog. And what sort of digital equipment would that be I can (almost) hear you ask? Well it was just a humble SonyEricsson T310 mobile phone where you had to attach the camera to the phone in order to take a picture. No video recording ability, sound recording was possible though, albeit with a memory capacity of about 640Kb, it would be a very short audio clip and practically unlistenable. You can see the photo I took at the top of this post, as for the sound, I captured a few seconds of "Speed Your Love To Me" and uploaded that on SoundCloud.
As for the gig itself, the setlist was much better than the 2014 one which seemed to focus on later and not so familiar songs. Thankfully I was able to retrieve it from setlist.fm.
Now having finally seen Simple Minds live, I realized I had not yet seen U2. In my mind these two bands were somehow interconnected, since back in the mid-to-late eighties they shared the same status of enormous success. We all know where U2 are now, they're still there at the top, but the Simple Minds popularity gradually dwindled in the 90's (probably due to the "epic", lengthy songs they seemed to be producing after 1989). Well, I finally got to see U2 not once, but twice in 2009 in Cardiff and in 2010 in Athens, and as I've already mentioned the Simple Minds again in 2014.
Finally this wasn't actually the first gig where I took photo(s). I had taken my conventional camera with me at a Bob Geldof gig in 1990 at Lycabettus Theare where I was in the first row. Now all i need to do is find the photos, scan them and write another "throwback" blog post some time in the future...
01. Stay Visible
03. Love Song
04. Book Of Brilliant Things
05. See The Lights
06. Big Sleep
07. All The Things She Said
10. She's A River
11. Underneath The Ice
12. Someone Somewhere In Summertime
13. Speed Your Love to Me
14. Don't You (Forget About Me)
15. Belfast Child
16. Different World
17. Seeing Out the Angel
18. New Gold Dream (81-82-83-84)
19. Theme for Great Cities
21. Alive and Kicking
I had heard of The Randen from a friend of mine but I had never listened to them. The first time I did that was when they released their first digital single "Songs Of Freedom". And I immediately wanted to see them live because they sounded nothing like what I expected. More of a British "alternative" / "new wave" sound than an American classic rock one that I'm used to from several local bands. Plus, another thing that makes them different, in the words of my friend who introduced me to them, is their songwriting. They have written not just a lot of songs but a lot of good songs. If you search around the internet for The Randen you'll probably only come across the two songs that comprise the "Songs Of Freedom" single, but they have written a lot more. In fact, at the time of this gig they had already finished their as yet unreleased first album and have completed several tracks that are going to be featured in their second one. That's why they can do full-length gigs based on their own material. And they have done several gigs so far, most of them free, or with a very low admission price, it just was never convenient for me to go.
But I finally did go last week at the Tiki Bar in Athens. And although it was yet another occasion where I would have to leave early to catch the last bus home, the gig started early so I was able to enjoy most of it!
And yes, admission was only 3 Euros and apparently I was the 25th guest!