Friday evening saw Boyzone treading the boards, but Saturday had a very different musical offering with ‘Daytripper’, headlined by Ocean Colour Scene.
This was actually my first ‘real’ gig on Hastings Pier since it reopened, so I was very keen to find out what I’d been missing during previous concerts.
First onstage on Saturday were Peter Hook and The Light, who treated us to a selection of past glories from his time with both Joy Division and New Order.
That distinctive Hooky bass sound was very much in evidence, even if most of the bass playing was actually played by a second bass guitarist, not that anyone really cared about that.
It was good to hear all those classic tracks once again, especially those early New Order singles such as Temptation and Ceremony, which have always been personal favourites.
I’m sure he’d admit himself that Peter Hook’s vocals aren’t the greatest in the world, but the music behind them was very well done.
The hits came thick and fast with outings for Joy Division’s She’s Lost Control and Transmission, plus New Order’s Blue Monday and True Faith, which were all faithfully replicated.
An impressive set was rounded off with Love Will Tear Us Apart.
I’ll be honest and say that I wasn’t expecting to enjoy Peter Hook’s set as much as I did, so a pleasant surprise to start off the evening.
One very pleasing aspect of the Daytripper gig was the amount of children in the audience, no doubt mostly due to the promoters, One Inch Badge, allowing kids under 10 free entry.
Well done to them for that. It’s good to start the gig going habit young, and hopefully many of these kids will be back again in the future.
Many of those kids were wearing band t.shirts too, which was good to see.
Second up, and going even further back in time, were The Bootleg Beatles, possibly the original tribute band, seeing as they’ve been performing the songs of the Fab Four for decades now.
Tonight they were channeling the earlier part of The Beatles career, playing songs up to the Rubber Soul album.
I must admit I was expecting at least a nod to the 50th anniversary of Sgt Pepper, but that wasn’t to be.
These guys have studied the clothing, movements, mannerisms, playing style and accents of John, Paul, George and Ringo.
They’ve even got the between song banter down to a tee.
The Bootleg Beatles are definite crowd pleasers, after all who doesn’t know the words to those early Beatles classics?
I’ll be honest and say that they didn’t really do it for me though.
Maybe I’ve been spoilt by many years of Hastings Beatles Day?
At least The Beatles finally got a chance to play on Hastings Pier though, even if it was the Bootleg version.
After a spectacular sunset Ocean Colour Scene took to the stage, starting with The Riverboat Song, what else?
As advertised the band performed all the tracks from the classic Moseley Shoals album, which is now 21 years old, scary isn’t it?
I’d forgotten some of those album tracks over the years, but they came back to me instantly when they were played on the night.
I seemed to be in a minority here as the crowd were singing along to the lesser known songs too, and obviously having a great time.
Two things I learned from Ocean Colour Scene’s set was just how good a band they were/are, and also how good their songs are, quality stuff.
The band themselves seemed to be on fine form, especially guitarist Steve Cradock, who was exceptional on the night. No wonder Paul Weller rates him so highly.
Simon Fowler’s vocals have certainly stood the test of time too, as he was in fine voice.
The guys also appeared to be enjoying themselves as well, which is always a nice thing to see.
Maybe the very good sound and lighting helped with that?
Apart from Moseley Shoals we were treated to some other highpoint’s of Ocean Colour Scene’s career, including Traveller’s Tune, the excellent Profit In Peace, and a storming version of Hundred Mile High City.
The night ended with The Day We Caught The Train, which had the whole crowd, including myself, singing along at the top of their voices.
All in all a very impressive set.
You know you’ve had a good evening when the next morning you dig out an album by the headline band.
Suffice it to say that Moseley Shoals got an airing on Sunday, and I have a feeling it will be getting a few more over the coming weeks.