On finding myself in London on a cold January night I thought it was worth checking out what gigs were taking place in the area. Gutted to have missed Neil and Liam Finn in Dublin it was as if ‘seven worlds had collided’ as by chance they were performing in Hackney’s EartH venue.
Neil Finn is without doubt one of the greatest songwriters of our time. Equally a master of words as he is of music his songs are timeless, emotive and the soundtrack to an entire generation.
As a life long fan of Split Enz, Crowded House, Betchadupa, the Finn Brothers etc the sound of EartH had a truly sacred ring. I decided it was worth battling the elements to make the trip across the city to Hackney.
It came as no surprise that the gig had sold out weeks before but where there is a will there is a way and a way was found. EartH is a superb venue, no rugged security barrier it’s intimate and the tiered seating meant visibility for all.
Having attended every Belfast Finn visit ever I was going to get a frozen plane, or a plethora of Uber issues stop me from making it to this gig.
Neil and Liam Finn were in fine form treating the packed venue with hits from their individual back catalogues. The night was a family affair with Sharon Finn (Neil’s wife) and Elroy (son) joining the ensemble adding a fresh energy to already special songs.
There was also a fair bit of family banter with dad jokes galore. One member of the audience in a moment of madness dared to shout “average” on the conclusion of ‘Anger Plays a Part’. Anger almost played a part… but Liam’s reaction quickly turning to humour to manage the situation beautifully.
The Finn family talent was evident with the instrument swapping throughout the night. The family were also joined by Jolyon Mulholland, initially helping with guitar setups and then performing front of stage. It all comes so easily to the Finns and it was great to hear hundreds of EartH voices joining in song after song.
It was also great to catch up with industry aficionado Neil McCormick and sharing stories of music, Ireland, upcoming artists, the joy of Wolf Alice and also to introduce him to Amy Montgomery.
A winter’s night in London simply doesn’t get better than this. Memories forged.
Full Set : Sweet Dreams, Back to Life, Four Seasons in One Day, Anger Plays a Part, Pineapple Head, Meet Me in The Air, We Know What it Means, Miracle Glance, Message to My Girl, Any Other Way, Listen, Fire in Your Belly,Fall at Your Feet, Better to Be, Golden Child, Energy Spent, I Got You, Distant Sun, Black and White Boy, Cold Feet, Where’s My Room, Don’t Dream It’s Over.
Camera: Travelling light my trusty pocket camera (in its little leather case) the X100F allowed me to capture the the event effortlessly. I so love the lowlight performance of this little workhorse.