11

A Get (Hi-Fi) Serious

‘A’ have some tough decisions to make today, namely what to include in the set for a thirty five minute slot on the main stage at Donington. Initially though this is the least of their worries as when they kick into opening track ‘Rush Song’ the sound (towards the back of the arena at least) is terrible. The vocals sound like they’re being played through a mangled tape recorder and the guitar levels swoosh up and then drop with annoying regularity. The keyboards are totally lost and the bass is just a rumble in the distance!


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Against the odds though ‘A’ do their best and are fortunate to have as accomplished a front man as JP. Using the two levels of the stage to good effect he interacts with the crowd throughout and barely stands still, pausing only to incite some crowd violence during ‘Lake Tahoe!).


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They rip through their short set in fine style and thankfully nearer the stage the sound is much better (although still rather top heavy). As it turns out they pick a couple of songs from the beginning, middle and most recent periods of their career; from Hi-Fi Serious we get ‘Nothing’ and ‘Something’s Going On’ early in the set which are followed by a track from the new album in ‘Art of Making Sense’. The new song sounds good and utilises the familiar ‘A’ song structure of harmonious verse lashed together with a big catchy chorus.


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Old favourite ‘Foghorn’ never fails to get the crowd going and sure enough it gets the usual airing and goes down well with its more punk fuelled edges. The next single follows ‘Better Off With Him’ and whilst I wasn’t convinced when I first heard it on their recent tour it does sound good on the big stage, certainly a grower.


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Those of the crowd that aren’t already engaged are dragged into things during ‘I (heart) Lake Tahoe' which surely has one of the most sing a long choruses going. I did wonder if ‘A’ might struggle amongst a line up of more metal bands but those fears were unwarranted as they get good crowd reaction. Penultimate song ‘The Distance’ is followed by their big hit ‘Starbucks’ which once again finds the crowd in fine voice.


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The band have given it everything as we’ve come to expect and once again they have pulled off a great set which today (and today only!) is the perfect length, short, succinct and to the point.


To view all photos taken during this set click here. There are 10 available.