Setlist - Spratton Festival - Northampton

Bluehorses Set List - Spratton

Cabbage Train
Witch in Wedlock
Blackleg Miner
Gravel Walk
Ostara/ Morrison's
Barbara Allen
Billy Boy
Night Visit
Sitting Pretty
Haslam's Bits
Bigger Gun

__ Encores __


Pictures from the show are available in the photo gallery here

Mike's Festival Diary - Spratton

Friday ... good excuse in the bag (the girls had a consultation day... didn't have to tell, that their appointments were all before 11am) - as I was anxious to get an early start. Northampton involved the M25 and the M1... not good on a Friday early evening. As it was we slumped to barely crawling speed as we chugged up to the M3 junction.... portent of more to follow. this particular queue lasted until the after the M40 junction, only to start again at the M1 junction. This second one wormed its way through the road works at an average speed of 10 mph, and a top speed of 30 mph. So I was really pleased when we emerged out the top end and could get some ventilation into the van - the weather was very muggy, and threatening storms - of course the thunder and lightning would be provided by the band when it was show time.

The festival site itself was laid around the edges of the village football pitch, with a massive stage centered on one of the penalty areas. Surprisingly the ground was still exceedingly green without a hint of mud anywhere, which was a tribute to the groundsman.

Bob was already there and got us all organized as we arrived ... The girls and I in the horse box, followed by BH2 (still creaking from its rapid deceleration out of warp speed), Hev and Gary, and finally BH1 (there was some excuse about having to find some thing to substitute for Diamond White, which has been relegated due to poor performance).

The hospitality tent have a big surprise and rare treat ... (perculated coffee) so Stan and I were sorted for the rest of the afternoon. Meanwhile the mundane jobs filled the hours before show time ... Jay led the discussion on tactics ... which tunes should be played when, before the girls could write out the game plan. Nic held a master class in the finer arts of drum tuning.

All too soon Cave were on the stage and it was time to get ready... the change over time was pegged at 15 mins, so we had to be ready to just position everything when the whistle blew. As Bluehorses were headlining it was a relatively smooth (but manic) operation for the change over. Once the kit was ready, it was time for the girls and I to get the cameras set.... I was going to try out the helmet cam again... taped to one of the outside legs of the tent with an excellent field of view over the stage... hopefully the footage can be married up to that from the other cameras.

After all the excitement it was time to enjoy what remained of Cave's set .. very enjoyable, not surprising when old friend of the band, Guy Fletcher, was one of them....

At 9:30 the whistle went and mad panic ensued.... but in 5 mins, the stage was clear, and a further 5 mins it was full again. that just left the line check to go.... By now I had legged it around to the sound and lighting desks in the main auditorium. A brief exchange of "pleasantries" with the sound man and we were ready to start.

As if on cue the rain started just as the show exploded on the stage, however this did not dampen the enthusiasm, as is now the norm, the band started with Cabbage Train and then straight into Witch in Wedlock. A few words about thinking "happy thoughts" to chase the rain away, from Lizzie and Blackleg miner led into Gravel Walk, and Ostara. The rain was deterring no-one and the mosh pit was bouncing, so time for the first new tune of the night - Raggle - which was greeted by a loud cheer.

Barbara Allen soon gave way to Billy boy and then the massive Hen all kicks and bounces. The lighting guy was having a ball there were shapes all over the dome of the stage tent. At one point there was an impassioned plea from the monitor engineer, as his desk at the side of the stage had vanished beneath a dense cloud of smoke!.

Night Visit and Sitting Pretty ancient and modern lead into the finally charge. Haslam's Bits, Bigger Gun, Skyclad and the irrefutable Hoedown.

With huge smiles the band thanked the crowd and exited, only to be called back for the inevitable Twmbarlwm. This held one last surprise for the sound guy .. as Rhayn blasted into overdrive for his solo, the slider went the wrong way, even the dogs in the audience barked in surprise!

Superb .... fantastic and great fun....

Setlist - The Point - Cardiff

Set List - The Point

Cabbage Train
Witch in Wedlock
Billy Boy
Barbara Allen
Night Visit
Ostara/ Morrison's/ Gravel Walk

__ Encores __

Pictures from the show are available in the photo gallery here

Andy's gig Diary - The Point - Cardiff

Bluehorses back home to Wales. Its been a while since the band have played here and i think a first at The Point. Not far from here is the Coal Exchange, another great venue were Bluehorses supported Hawkwind a few years back. Tonight, again in a supporting role, the band supported The Men They Couldnt Hang. Bluehorses are not a support band, but, as this offer came in, it was a great chance for the band to play to a home crowd at Cardiffs superb Point Venue.

The trip down from work was lets just say......a blur. I know from past experience that parking can be a challenge, but i was lucky to find one straight away next to Mike.

It was a nice suprise to see Martin (see picture left) Martin is ex Bluehorse guitarist from the first couple of albums, he was here with his lovley wife to offer support....hell of a nice guy.

Bluehorses were set to kick off at 8.30pm. There was a reasonable size crowd inside, mostly to see the main band. Due to an oversight out of the bands control, the Bluehorses had no mention on any advertising in the area, so really this was a Men They Couldnt Hang crowd, who were just about to be baptized into the world of Celtic Rock in the true Bluehorses style...loud and in your face.

Cabbage Train was the opener, always a great way of kicking the nights show off....taking no prisoners. There was a fare few open mouths, that soon turned to approving nodding heads and big smiles.

Witch In Wedlock was soon hot on its approving big smile from ex BH guitarist Martin.
The sound out front was excellent, and the band were on fire tonight, on a mission. Playing to a new home crowd, they just went for it big time. For a set that was only an hour long they chose a set list that really did the trick.

As the set went on, the more the crowd lapped it up. A new track was aired after Billy Boy...and awsome doesnt even scratch the surface to describe how good it was. With a working title of Hen (not the feathered kind).

A updated version of Ostara into Gravel Walk gave a slight change of pace, and superb it was to, but the pace was soon sent up to full throttle again. Raggle Taggle Gypsy, a pre studio album track off the Dark Circle tape has been re-horsed and updated to fit the sound of Bluehorses 2007. It was just the dogs danglies.

To close the nights onslaught, the band finished off with Copeland, and a very fitting rocky, boucy way to end the nights show.
The whole evening was a massive success, converting what was really a Men They Couldnt hang crowd. However, there were many a comment made by the fans of the headline act such as..."how the hell are they going to follow that", many people where coming up asking for details on the band, or asking for autographs from their now new BH cds...MISSION ACCOMPLISHED.

Mike's gig diary - The Point, Cardiff

So ... home town gig, new material, excellent venue .... the runes were all pointing towards an excellent night out.

No worries it was Fantastic

Half my family have been long time fans of The Men They Couldn't Hang so when there was an opportunity to see them and Bluehorses on the same bill, there was lots of pressure applied to be there. The logistics of this did not come into the equation.

The day started by me getting up early to begin work (isn't flexy time brilliant for this). After the girls had left for school Sue packed the dog off to solitary at the local kennels, she would never have survived on her own for the 14 hours we would be gone! By lunchtime I had completed my alloted quota of work, so the preparations began, with loading all the video and sound recording equipment into the van, along with several bags of goodies to help sustain us through the rest of the day and into tomorrow.

By 3pm we were parked outside the school gates, amid all the 4*4's jostling for pole position. A slight stutter when the girls were not at the head or the mass exodus, had me thinking they had forgotten the revised arrangements and were heading for the bus, but they were soon settling into the back, and we were off.

The journey started off much better than I expected, for a Friday afternoon, as we zoomed off to Winchester and up the A34... only a mild hold up at Midhurst ... and onto the M4. As we approached Swindon things started to clog up, from there to Bristol was a nightmare typical of the Friday exodus. However once we were over the bridge everything eased up. By 7pm we were parking up behind the coal exchange, and ready hunt out the venue.
The venue was surprisingly easy to find and we turned up just as the BH sound check was starting. Rapidly we surveyed the hall - a converted church with a balcony at the back for added effect - and decided where the cameras would be and how we would operate. I was making a second attempt with the headcam - this had last been tried (unsuccessfully) at the flowerpot - I was planning to use a laptop to record onto.

After the sound check the waiting began... this was made better by the arrival of Martin (ex of this parish) and his lovely wife (coincidentally she teaches Rhayn Spanish!!! - its a crazy world). Much gossiping and catching up was done by all.
The show slot was an hour long so the normal set was re-worked and massaged to fit in. There were tunes from the set that has become the norm over the last few months ... starting with Cabbage train, and into Witch in Wedlock. then Billy Boy and Barbara Allen. So to use a motor racing analogy, the band had begun with a racing start and after four laps every thing was purring. Time to introduce a new trick.
When I saw the set list I thought this was a re-introduction of an old tune from around 5 years ago - called some thing long and full of consonants in Welsh, but shortened to Hen for us English speakers. However, instead of a gentle floating song with Liz and the harp, it transpires that this is a new one completely and has to be heard to fully comprehend how wrong I was.

An experiment into the existentialism of the phrase "oi!".
So after grabbing the fastest lap record, the pace did not slow as, with grins all around it was straight into Night Visit. Finally the relative calm of Ostara signalled the beginning of the pit stop, leading into the frenzy of Morrisons as the show was re-fueled, then the start of a re-working of the standard material, as the end of morrisons lead into the middle section of Gravel Walk, and then, continuing the analogy, the out lap as we roared into the raucous (or should that be rock-us) finale to Gravel walk.

Everyone on stage was really enjoying this, and with huge smiles They introduced the next number. A new tune with old words .. The old tune was from the original set way way back in the dim and distant past.. Raggle or Raggle Taggle Gypsy to give the words their full title. However I have not heard the words sung to such an "in your face" rocking backing before ... *fantastic*
The show was brought to a climax (bang on time) with the appropriate tune - Hoedown. After acknowledging the crowd the band floated off the stage, well proud.

We packed everything up as The Men They Couldn't Hang got into full swing and then joined Sue and the girls on the balcony for the rest of their set - I must say it is an excellent position to see a band from with a superb view of the stage.

We piled back into the van as the Cinderella hour ticked over, and an uneventful drive back saw me hit the pit by 4am... everyone else having grabbed some sleep on the journey.

Next day Steph refused to take off the New Rocks (on loan from Lizzy) .. I guess she went to bed with them on. She is under strict instructions to take care of them and bring them for inspection at Spratton.

So ..........

you have been warned - next time you will be warmed (as an old headmaster once said to me).. If this is a portent of the new album - I can't wait!!