“Put away your doubts and fears”…

Fossil Collective – Leeds…

So, for background to this gig, let me rewind and begin at the beginning. It was on a train to London that I conceived the Forty for Forty concept. It was a rough idea at that time and was a great idea, but very impractical!

The original notion of attending forty music gigs was very nice, but never really going to happen due to time and a limited amount of singers / bands I would be able to see – due to tour, location or my taste. It was then watered down somewhat to the form it is now, Forty “events” that encompass music, theatre and comedy.

Now, it was on that train to London that I realised that Ethan Johns was coming to the UK. Johns being a famous producer and who’s work I had been familiar on via the Crowded House album “Time On Earth” – which Johns part produced and also played on a B-Side – the amazing “Lost Island”.

So I decided that I would go and that was to become event number 3 – but I also saw that he was playing Bristol. This is the area where my good Frenz Susie lives and I managed to persuade Suzie that it would be a great idea if she went, experienced Johns and reported back ahead of my gig.

The rest of that can be read here – but the upshot was that I was happy for Susie to suggest a gig and that’s how I ended up back at the Brudenell Social Club in Leeds for my 4th time to see the Fossil Collective. Once again, I decided to not listen to the band ahead of time – I am still not convinced if this is a good thing to do.

It has to be said, I have now warmed to the venue, but at the same time, I will be glad of a break from it – if that makes sense. This time, I was surprised at the make-up of the audience – much changed from my last 3 visits. All much younger, more students and all sat on the floor!

Well, for the Two support acts at least – I am not sure if this is the new thing when it comes to gigs, but it really was a surreal experience at times. The first act was a singer called Thomas Speight –  I know what you’re thinking, I never really take notice of support acts, but I not only got his name, I have just bought his CD.

You see, I like acts with a bit of spark on top of the music and his act had it in buckets. Amazing voice, good songs – worked the crowd well for someone so young too. He was accompanied by a girl and another bloke on a electric guitar and the act worked really well.

The climax was the 3 of them jumping from stage and singing the final song acoustic with no microphones. You could not hear a pin drop as the spell bound audience lapped it up. It was refreshing and amusing at the same time – we will here more from them I am sure. Sadly, the second act was woeful, but I managed to complete a poem whilst he was on, so no waste there.

By the time the Fossil Collective came on, people were on their feet and with this being a home town gig, they got a tremendous welcome. The 5 piece band were really good. Vocally amazing, the band were incredibly tight and songs really grabbed my attention – what more could I ask.

This really wasn’t punishment for subjecting Susie to Ethan Johns at all! The only downside was the crowd. Perhaps it’s just me, but I pay money to hear the band, not groups of youngsters shouting loudly to have conversation. And it wasn’t just my area, it was all over the floor. Partly I think that, as well as the Fossils sing, between songs, there was little to keep the crowd’s attention.

Which of course is a real shame. I would have no hesitation on recommending them – think Fleet Foxes and you wouldn’t be far wrong and the CD it really good. I managed to meet the lead singer after and had a quick chat, before heading off into the night – midnight actually as they did not take the stage till 10pm!

So that was my 10th event, with my next one not till the end of May – Derren Brown in Bradford – There were other gigs in-between, but finances and time is catching up with me. Still a quarter of the way there!

Forty for Forty has also undertaken a slight extension – I will explain more later – in the meantime, this if the Fossil Collective and beautiful “Under my Arrest”.