Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Admiral For President!

With a new album out 'Honey & The Knife' Admiral Freebee is touring the clubs again. A few years ago I saw this band on a festival for the first time. Tom Van Laere is the running force and frontman behind this band and a great entertainer. I was very impressed so I couldn't let this chance pass by to see them play in a more intimate setting.

Admiral Free in Melkweg Amsterdam, March 10 2010 (Ronald Says 8 out of 10)

When the lights go out and the band enters the stage they stand there for a few minutes. Obviously they are waiting for something. Then van Laere walks up to the mic and explains there's a minor technical difficulty. He continues by telling a joke. This is typical for the band. Although making serious rock songs that vary between blues, rock and country they certainly have a relaxed attitude on stage and are enjoying themselves. It's a blend of Nick Cave, Neil Young and Rolling Stones from Belgium. But most of all it's Admiral Freebee.

Singer/guitarist van Laere is the charismatic front man that adds this little extra. One time he's angrily almost screaming his lyrics reminding me of an angry Nick Cave. But later he's sitting behind the piano with only one spot light playing a beautiful ballad. The rest of the band with another well known Belgian musician Flip Kowlier on bass is merely there for support and are kind of on the background.

The first half of the set is mostly filled with songs of the new album that again shows the variation in songs. First the slow and sad 'Look at What love Has Done' behind the piano and later a swinging version of 'Always on the Run'. In the second half of the set it's time for older songs and hits like a great and long version of one of my favourites 'Get Out Of Town'.

At the end of the show he tells us about this beautiful girl he met and starts lip synching to a happy funky pop tune of which I just can't remember the title (if you know leave a comment with the title please!). The rest of the band are standing behind him doing an accompanying happy dance. Van Laere then invites everyone over to join him on stage. And so the show ends with people dancing with the band on stage while the lights are being switched on again. And like van Laere sings in one of their songs there's only one conclusion possible: Admiral for President!

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