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THE ENID Robin 2, Bilston 15 October 2009
Photo by Lee
extended absence from the music scene, broken only by a few unconvincing
and subsequently abandoned revival attempts, The Enid is back on the road.
And, if last
Thursday’s performance at the Robin 2 in Bilston is any indicator, they
are preparing to reclaim their place among progressive rock’s finest.
This is The
Enid as their loyal fans remember them, with Robert John Godfrey leading
firmly from the front. The latest incarnation shows much more confident
Robert than in recent years, clearly enjoying the experience of performing
and working with new band members and new material.
The set mainly comprised music from The Enid’s latest release, the aptly
titled Arise and Shine, a showcase for both new material and reworkings of
Enid classics performed by the new line up.
Well, not so
new, perhaps; both Max Read on keys and vocals and Dave Storey on drums
are well established Enid members and performed faultlessly, as they have
done for many years.
Photo by Lee
is the new boy and while he currently lacks Stephen Stewart’s stage
presence and Nick May’s sense of adventure, he could possibly be the
guitarist that understands Robert John Godfrey’s vision for The Enid more
than any of his predecessors.
Hydraulic Forces of the Id built beautifully before Ducker launched into
the killer riff that introduces the song’s finale, playing with great
sensitivity, yet with no lack of power.
the Blue Yonder was one of the outstanding performances of the evening,
again largely due to Ducker’s sensitive approach which was also a feature
of Chaldean Crossing.
frenetic songs suited the venue best – at times some of the subtleties of
the music were lost in the mix, particularly in the new material which its
Photo by Lee
In the Region of Summer Stars also suffered from sounds competing with
rather than complementing each other, something that should not present a
problem in larger venues.
highlight of this show was the revised Childe Roland to the Dark Tower
Came, sounding as fresh and exciting as it did all those many years ago.
Award for the hardest working member of the band has to go to Nicholas
Willes, drafted in to perform bass and percussion duties, constantly
switching from one to the other, often looking as though he had hit the
right beat more by luck than judgement, but never failing to miss a cue.
timpani playing in particular gave the songs a new sense of urgency. An
immaculately played Something Wicked This Way Comes formed the encore,
Robert John Godfrey taking the lead vocal in his inimitable style and
rounding of a successful evening, albeit played out in front of a
disappointingly small audience.
Robert announced the now confirmed gig at Birmingham Town Hall in April,
the centrepiece of which will be a large scale performance of Fand and
tantalisingly played the beginning of The Lovers on solo piano, promising
to learn it for that concert.
new impetus to perform and record material (including rerecording the
band’s back catalogue over the next five years), this could be a very
interesting time ahead for those who have waited so long for the return of
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