Audiences at the Lorelei are terribly civilized. I mean, beer flows in large quantities but no-one gets drunk. I always enjoy a brätwurst on a roll but the steak rolls proved even more delicious. I bumped into some folk from the north of Germany, whom I had met there the previous year and enjoyed chatting to them once again. The husband remembered my comments made the previous year, about Fish being "ein böser Mann" (an angry man). I also got chatting to a rather pleasant, quiet fellow by the name of Owen, who happened to sit in the same row as I did Saturday. Turns out he was from Glasgow, Scotland, and the complete opposite of the annoying little pillock in a kilt who, along with his mates, displayed an unbelievable lack of respect during Klaus Schulze's set on Friday night. Heaven knows what they found so damned amusing; no-one else could figure it out!  Wankers!

The weather was terrific, at times hot and intense, though in the course of Saturday and Sunday, there were spells of rain, notably during Roger Hodgson's performance, whereupon he launched into "It's raining again", in an attempt to drive the clouds away. Given that only ten minutes are allowed to set up the stage for the next act and to carry out a sound-check, it is inevitable that a few technical problems would manifest themselves during the first song or two of any set, usually an instrument or the vocals too low in the mix. Some of the musicians would gesture to the side of the stage whereas the lanky frame of Fish would simply stride over in two or three steps, a much more direct, "in your face" approach. Drum-kits and elaborate keyboard set-ups would normally be constructed beforehand on a portable stage on small wheels, which would then be pushed onstage and the previous one wheeled off. Plug in and a few "one-two, one-two's" and we're away! A few more serious gremlins might make their way into the system, notably during ex-Specks Beard frontman Neil Morse and Roger Hodgson respective sets. But generally, the sound was pretty acceptable.


Brief comments (continued) - SATURDAY:

PRISMA - [Band from Switzerland. Largely forgettable. More about image than the music.]

IT BITES - [Tight, entertaining English band, great guitarist. Music fun and hugely accessible. Worth another listen. Might catch them in London in September 2008. In the back of my mind I had been wondering where I had seen the bass guitarist before. Introduced as Lee Pomeroy during the encore, it dawned on me that I remembered him as the bassist on a number of Rick Wakeman's videos, as a member of the English Rock Ensemble.

THE FLOWER KINGS - [Can't say I'm been a huge fan of their music but then perhaps I didn't know the music well enough , having only really seen them live on two occasions. I think Roine Stolt is a great guitarist though I didn't particularly like the live vocals overall. I also find their music lacks a focal point i.e. an idea in the middle of a composition is soon discarded and are not given an opportunity to develop into a theme. This leaves one with a sense that the compositions evolve into mega jam sessions. They do appear to be hugely popular though.  P.S> I have subsequently changed my opinion radically and grown to like them hugely (added 2013)]



PAIN OF SALVATION - [Band from Sweden, angst-ridden lyrics, they tend more to  aggressive, progressive metal, with harsh, death metal-like vocals characterised by a distinctive growling. Sound better on record than they do live. Not a huge fan.]

BARCLAY JAMES HARVEST - [Uninspiring, insipid & lifeless. A complete waste of time. so far removed from prog.]

FISH - [Germany and the Lorelei simply love Fish and this love affair probably stretches back to the early Marillion days. Fish headlined Saturday night once again and thankfully stated that he would shorten the lengthy monologue we were forced to endure the previous year, due to time constraints, concentrating on the music. It made a difference. This time round I actually enjoyed his set. Did his usual audience-bonding bit by jumping the barrier and mingling with the audience. Quite a character indeed. Music is very prog, nice sound. A menacing character you wouldn't want to get on the wrong side of, Fish delivers in energy and passion and makes the stage his own but his voice, always limited in range, is now by and large "shot to pieces".]





It Bites guitarist John Mitchell jams with keyboard player John Beck.


Lee Pomeroy on bass and John Mitchell on guitar.




It Bites guitarist John Mitchell.


Lee Pomeroy and John Mitchellr.




It Bites keyboardist John Beck.






Guitarist Roine Stolt of The Flower Kings.







Pain of Salvation's vocalist Daniel Gildenlöw.


Pain of Salvation's bassist Kristoffer Gildenlöw and guitarist Johan Hallgren.






Fish and his band return to headline Lorelei in 2008, just as they did in 2007.


Young guitarist Chris Johnson, Fish and Fish with bassist Steve Vantsis.








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