Moseley village, 2 miles off the centre of Birmingham. And Moseley Road being more or less the main road going through it. As I get off the bus and step onto the road it takes me a few minutes to find out where I have to go, but soon I discover a big pink sign saying “Moseley Folk Festival” with an arrow pointing in the direction of a little sidestreet. As I go from the busy road into the alleyway I immediately notice the atmosphere changing. As I walk on it’s like I’m walking back in time, back to the ’60’s that is. A park from a fairytale, 113 years old with big trees that look like they have had permission to grow just the way they like and a little lake with a few swans. Everything beautifully decorated with flowers and big leaves, stars and moons for the occasion. A few stands selling books, CD’s, Vinyl records, flowery dresses and scarfs, icecream and such. There are 2 stages next to eachother, which is brilliant as you don’t have to rush from one stage to another and you’re not missing anything either. The mainstage, where Turin Brakes will play around 7.20 that evening, doesn’t even have a backdrop, but has trees and shrubs in the background instead. Something which only adds to the feeling of being in a different time. The weather is warm and sunny and I think that is one of the reasons why people decide to enjoy the sun and the music sitting down. And people stay that way throughout the day, sitting, chilling and relaxing.
The music during day is wonderful. Highlights for me being: Matthew P., Vadoinmessico, Erland and the Carnival and Fyfe Dangerfield. Each one of them giving away a wonderful show and playing lovely music. However the main reason for me to be there is Turin Brakes. And at 7.20 the time has come for them to get Moseley going.
And they do get us going. They start off with ‘Sea Change’, a song with a message and very strong lyrics that move you to the core. The people there are definitely enjoying what they’re seeing and hearing. Funnily enough however everybody is still sitting down on the floor. But as it goes, all you need is one person to set the rest in motion. In this case there is one woman, happily moving around and encouraging people to get up. It doesn’t take me long to join in and with me a few other people, till after a few songs most people are dancing. They play ’72’, emotional and beautifully sung by Olly. ‘Apocolips’ with it’s soulful harmonies, such a lovely song. ‘Long Distance’ which always moves me deeply and the song someone in the crowd already asked for: ‘Painkiller’, one of those sparkly songs that never fails to make me happy.
Also there is enough time for moments of fun between the band and the audience. At a certain point a woman in the crowd starts chanting to Olly, who is playing on his socks; “socks off, socks off”. To which Olly replies; “My socks off? No way, you will never see my naked feet”. An answer received with cheers and laughter. During ‘Wicked Game’ (Chris Isaac Cover) everybody is having a wonderful time and I feel very fortunate to hear them play it live. It looks like Gale, Olly, Rob and Eddie are enjoying themselves too and they seem to be putting all their love, spirit and energy into their performance. Way too soon the last song is there. Again they play a cover, this time the song “Everybody knows this is nowhere” originally played by Neil Young. Everybody, till the littlest kid there, is singing along.
And then unfortunately they have to go, and as people cheer, applaud and hope for an encore they leave the stage. And for quite a while people continue to ask for more, until Janice Long tells us that unfortunately there is no time for an encore and they do have to get on with the next performance. I retreat to a little bench next to the lake to try and hold on to the music, completely missing the next two acts when suddenly I see Gale and Olly walk past. I call them and we have a really nice chat for a while and for me that is the perfect ending to a perfect day.
Turin Brakes played (not necessarily in this order):
-Mind over Money
-Wicked Game (Chris Isaac Cover)
-Underdog (Save Me)
-Everybody Knows This is Nowhere (Neil Young Cover)