James - Kendal Calling 2012 review
'They sneak their way into full flow'
Jamie Barker - 29 July 2012
There's a startling figure to be found at the Kendal Calling merch desk. It's not the price of the merch itself (which
is actually very reasonable), it's the number 82d sitting inconspicuously on a James
It's startling as it symbolises the fact that this year is James 30th year anniversary. Over that time they've amassed an extensive back catalogue so it's somewhat surprising that the crowd awaiting them as they stride onstage is fairly meagre in comparison to this year's other headliners.
They hammer out three songs before Tim Booth even raises his head to address the crowd and they immediately launch into another sequence of tracks from throughout their lengthy career. It's safe to say that James haven't come out all guns blazing with their bouncing commercial successes, instead they sneak their way into full flow.
Things really start to build to a crescendo when, about halfway through the set they deliver a meandering version of 'Out To Get You' which slowly works it way under everyone's skin.
The crowd finally finds itself in full voice as the brass backing heralds the arrival of 1992's 'Ring The Bells'. By now the crowd has swelled considerably (perhaps they were all checking their tyres for the drive home tomorrow) and the band move from strength to strength.
Straight after a disparaging comment about 'people who always want us to play the hits' they launch straight into 'Come Home'. Slightly ironic? Maybe, but you don't spend 30 years in the music industry without 'playing the hits' from time to time.
As they encore with a stripped back version of 'Sit Down' and a climatic 'Laid', the Kendal Calling curtain is not simply brought down, more heroically yanked from the rafters.
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