Monday, 27 August 2012

Poets of the Fall Live in Pune, India

25th August 2012, a day which will forever be embedded in my soul for I witnessed one of the greatest acts which I have yet- POETS OF THE FALL SOME FREAKING METERS AWAY FROM ME!
Pardon the caps for I had to use it. Poets of the Fall has always been one of my most favourite bands, and this night was the first time I ever been to a "real" concert and also the first time I have been to a Hard Rock Cafe. This is technically the third time they are touring India, but the first big one performing in five cities- Bengalure, New Delhi, Pune, Hyderabad and Kolkata respectively, the first 3 at which having been organized by Vh1 India at their respective city's Hard Rock Cafes. While it was saddening to me that there wasn't one in my city Mumbai (seriously WTF?!) but that didn't stop me from traveling to Pune to see them as life doesn't give you such opportunities always (or rather the management)

My short (just ~180 km or ~112 miles) journey was rather an adventurous one. While not getting into much details, just the few stuff like catching a bus from Mumbai-Pune, going on a hike across the city and searching for the dam place along with the cool climate (and hot chicks, for which Pune is known for, well that is what I know/care about) made up my day :D
Also let me not mention the boring waiting time, which is one of the deadliest of all killers.

Coming to the evening time arriving at the venue (after another search and breakdown of the vehicle just to my luck) I managed to reach on time and finally meet my buddies Ramon, Setul and Shashank (eh did I mention these guys work for EMI Music India and they bloody meet and even tour with most bands!?) who got me my pass for the show. Due to some unforeseen circumstances and shit I couldn't be with them but I did make up for that being in the crowd. I owe you a lot buddies, thank you for everything, especially Ramon, whom I've been "pestering" (just the word?) since the past few weeks for this day. (heck Setul was even scared to ask me how many times I must have called him) :P Drinks are on me next time!

The place was jam-packed and there were hundreds outside without tickets hoping to buy and get it in before the show (the police drive them off, hard luck for them). All tickets were sold out within 2 days when they were announced some weeks back, that clearly indicated how much India wanted POTF. Since I was not so on time really, arriving some time before the scheduled time of 8 PM, I was somewhere caught in the middle of the crowd, which I (being an ass after all) managed to discreetly and with (a lot) effort manage to go upfront during the very annoying waiting time when rock tracks were being played and I jumping and screaming on most of them (random folk even asked whether I came for POTF at all) :D

 Hard Rock Cafe Pune with the crowd

After waiting for nearly 2 hours in the hot sweating condition in the crowd, that totally vanished when the much awaited guys came up on stage (being cheered and screamed at since they could be spotted from the balcony till walking up the stage) who wasting not even a second further started off the show with Kamikaze Love. Dam! Marko greeted the crowd (and continued to speak throught out the gig at times) and they played songs from the old and new, Diamond for Tears, Temple of Thought was greeted with much energy followed by Roses and people (including me, mostly) literally cried when they played Cradled in Love. Beautiful, just beautiful! :')

They continued playing classics like Stay, War, The Lie Eternal and one of my personal favourites Locking up The Sun, which was started by Marko screaming INDIA!

"Is there a hero somewhere, someone who appears and saves the day
Someone who holds out a hand and turns back time."

I got the answer just a few meters away from me as the band and the crowd sang (or rather screamed) these words. POTF did the exact dam thing! Nailed it.

The best moments which I can recall are Marko pulling up his cell phone and telling us "So I'm seeing you want us to perform certain songs - you want us to play Illusions and Dreams?" I swear I screamed my lungs out "YES!" and so did the crowd. That is probably my most favourite POTF track, this was a moment for everyone to relish.

So can you name your demon?
Understand its scheming
I raise my glass and say "here's to you"
Can you chase your demon?
Or will it take your freedom?
I raise my class and say "here's to you"

That was the band's tribute to the fans, which received overwhelming energy packed powerful positive response. I was moving (remember?) jumping screaming with joy totally lost in the awesome vibe of the show when there was again a brief silence as whenever Marko addressed the crowd. He went on to say they were about to perform a song, rather THE song which POTF first wrote. In that moment I immediately yelled (jumping and screaming as I always was) MAX PAYNE! I got a view looks around from the crowd but that is not the point- Marko turned towards me and was like "Oh Yeah!" and they began to perform Last Goodbye. That was it. That was THE moment. That was MY moment! (I still so dam wish there was some sort of recording of it!) I'm never going to forget this in my life! (well until something better happens that is) He might not remember it most likely (sort of obvious, but well I hate that word) but for me that was like a milestone in itself. I'm a avid gamer and Max Payne was one of the first games I ever played and one of my most favourite which brings nostalgia of my childhood. The band wrote Late Goodbye for Max Payne 2 (which as he said was one of their first works) and that was how I heard of them first. Max fucking Payne. Gave me another good memory to relish.

When it seemed the show wrapped up and they were leaving saying thank you and all, the crowd cried for more. It was an awesome sight, as the frontman immediately turned back and came down to the stage again and they performed Dreaming Wide Awake and one final song which probably every other person who listens to music might have heard - Carnival of Rust. At this time the crowd was with full energy level despite being so tired that it was hard to differentiate on who was actually singing. They ended the awesome gig with Marko going back up the staircase to the balcony and finally ending it there gazing at the entire crowd from above as some god. It was dam cool. Perfect.

courtesy of Dijesh Nair

Thus ended a unfortunately short performance because of various (should I mention disappointing on the part of the management?) but very successful gig by Poets of the Fall. I along with many others could not digest the fact Lift was dropped, but oh well it was still absolutely brilliant. The big concerts with huge crowds in football stadiums are cool, but such small limited ones have a charm of its own, the intimacy here really brings out the beautiful connection of the music and passion between the band and the fans. Being an old fan and all this being happening so unexpected I was very moved (as said many even cried when hearing their favourite songs) I must have had goosebumps throughout the show. Everyone of them was great.

Jari. Jani. Jaska. Olli. Captain. Marko. Every single guy nailed it. (And it is always great to see Marko show his theatricality on stage)

When I read this article by Rolling Stone India some days back, it really did get to me.

“We love India. This is the only country in the world where we feel like great rockstars. We get mobbed at our gigs.”

I surely hope you loved your travel, stay and gigs here. I hoped we lived up to your expectations and exceeded it. You sure did. Thank you for the best day of my life, yet! Hoping to see you again soon!

Ending it with this sweet tee signed by Marko, Captain and Olli which I nabbed from Hard Rock Cafe Pune. (They signed exclusively 20 of them!) :D

Don't cry for your love, cry tears of joy
Cos you're alive cradled in love



Raj S Khot said...

It was spectacular to say the least! And I like the way you have addressed the concert than what happened in the day like I did!
There was another awesome and rather surprising aspects of the Poets that both of us have forgotten to add in our posts!
Most bands' vocalists prefer warm water or beverages whilst performing; Marko on the other hand was drinking chilled Coke the whole time! That was different allright:P

Great post buddy, and well here's mine :)

Unknown said...

Yes I already read yours! (thats how you found me I guess) :P
is it? I didn't notice that! thats cool to know
thanks for the heads up :D

Mary said...

Nice Post

Mary Rose said...

This is good post. I think Pune is the best place for living.

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it's Drago.... email me @ sempiterna.

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