Tuesday, October 14, 2008

They will rock you...

I've just got back this afternoon from a superb long weekend away with Little Sis & family. We usually enjoy our time with them but this was something a bit special as last night I went to the O2 with her other half to watch Queen and Paul Rodgers.

Firstly, I ought to say that the O2 is an excellent venue which also boasts some superb food venues to be tried whilst you're whiling away the hours between turning up as enthusiastic and early as we did and the doors opening about 6 hours later. We eventually settled for a couple of burgers from the Slug and Lettuce, which I highly recommend (especially on Mondays when food is half price and therefore, nearer to prices expected in Grimsby than London).

At 5:30, we were both surprised to receive a text from O2 telling us we had won a mobile text competition and had been upgraded to a VIP lounge. We verified this at the desk and it was correct. Well, to a point. I was already on the phone trying to text everyone I knew saying that we had been upgraded to better seats, with VIP passes and who knows what other perks, when I overheard the "actual" prize being explained to another winner. What we had actually won was access into a separate lounge to wait in more comfort before making our way to our original seats. Still with its own reasonably priced bar (by London standards), some O2 bank notes to flutter on the casino tables and an abundance of free chocolate dice and chips on offer, who was I to complain?

After another brief burger stop (from the huge selection of food counters available within the actual arena complex) we made our way to our seats on the 4th tier and although that sounds a mile away from the stage, we had an excellent view and the little distance there was didn't diminish our enthusiasm for cheering, clapping, shouting, singing and generally getting into the spirit of it all. Hand on heart, I think I would have preferred one of the standing tickets, but perhaps my ageing bones may have thought otherwise after a two and a half hour show.

The band themselves? The word awesome is severely overused in conversation these days but it is well deserved here as they all gave a truly outstanding performance both collectively as a group and individually with solo performances. They sang all of the old Queen favourites you could have asked for, liberally interspersed with tracks from their new album, a couple from the Paul Rodgers archive and not forgetting of course the obligatory guitar and drum solos.

I'll not spoil it for anyone who is planning to go and see them by giving too much else away, but if you're interested, Brian May has added the whole set list here to yesterday's post on his website and of course, YouTube is already crammed with video footage from the tour so far.

I really would recommend you go to see them if you're lucky enough to track down any available tickets but I understand that even the extended dates have practically sold out now. Not bad for a bunch of blokes with a collective age of nearly 350...


Jen said...

Saw them in Glasgow on Saturday night, and they were just as brilliant then. My legs were aching before the concert even started, and was looking longingly at the seats - until the music started. Brian tried to introduce '39 as "an old Scottish folk tune" befopre laughingly conceding that was maybe going too far. Very emotional, absolutely adored the whole show. Some of the reviews have been hysterical: apparently Paul Rodgers is not Freddie! (D'oh) . Really glad to read someone else enjoyed themselves.

Seany said...

Thanks for your comment Jen - I've just returned the favour.

The show must have been incredible from where you were stood. I suspect I'll be heading for the standing tickets next time around

Cherrypie said...

You lucky boy.

I'm going to a concert tomorrow. It's hardly Queen. But I do have front row seats, a backstage AAA pass and an invite to the after-party. I'm ever so slightly excited.