On Saturday, my wife and I were planning an adventure. We were going to find a fox!
Well, we were going to Manchester (a two-and-a-bit hour drive away) to watch Foxes perform. Same thing. Almost.
Either way, it was certainly an adventure, though not entirely how we imagined or intended.
We'd booked the tickets some time ago, as I've mentioned in a previous blog post. We'd seen the new Debenhams advert, Shazamed the song, downloaded all she had and then I went online to see if she was touring. We are completely convinced that the website for the venue - the Roadhouse in Manchester - said the date was Saturday the 5th of October. My wife even booked the day off work. I did the same - though I don't normally work weekends. I've been working ten hour days, seven days a week for the past month and Saturday 5th would be my first day off. I was looking forward to it! I'd be back at work on the Sunday, but Saturday was my day off and this was a great way to spend it.
I said as much on Twitter, including Foxes (@iamfoxes) in the tweet. And I felt a right TWITter when she responded, telling me she didn't actually have a gig that night...
No gig? Surely not. It was the 5th. The Saturday. That was what the website said when we booked. We know it did......?
We wouldn't have both got it wrong, would we?
I checked the tickets. When they came, we simply shoved them in a drawer. We knew the date. Why look?
Well. The tickets said the concert was the next night. The Sunday.
Ah. Not only was I meant to be working until 5:30pm and the gig was due to start at 6:00pm - and it was a good couple of hours drive - but we'd arranged a babysitter (my wife's wonderful grandmother) to come and stay the night.
So. Change of plan.
I tried to ring to cancel Nanna. There was no answer. I returned to my house from town to find them already there. OK, it was fine, Nanna would still come the next day. In the meantime let's all go out for tea. Yum!
The next morning - Sunday the 6th - I was up at 6:00pm for work. At 3:30pm, my wife came to my place of work and we jumped in my car, leaving hers there, and made our way to Manchester. Google Maps is our friend, and we found the place and a car park easily, and we were there with a half hour or so to spare. There was a small queue outside the venue, a small door, so off we went for a wander.
We walked up aways, just to kill time (though I'm not sure what Time did to deserve such a severe punishment). On the way back, there was a loud BANG. A taxi had mounted the curb at a pedestrian crossing on a bend and hit the railing. He'd been texting on his phone (naughty boy!). It served him right, really, that his wheels no longer wanted to point in the same direction and he had to struggle to move the car away as it couldn’t make its mind up which way it wanted to go.
Back to the queue for the last few minutes before doors opening. The queue was fairly short, but Foxes is fairly new, so it was to be expected. This relative newcomer status was reflected in the £7 ticket price. A couple of lovely ladies came out to hand out flyers and take email addresses for a mailing list. OK, so they were there to promote, but they were very pleasant in doing so, and it helped pass the time.
We hadn’t been to the Roadhouse before. Our previous concert outings in Manchester were limited to the MEN Arena and the Ethiad stadium for the likes of Snow Patrol (twice – amazing!) and Bon Jovi (not bad), amongst others. I’ve said before about the Yardbirds rock club in Grimsby. It’s a great place with some excellent music. The Roadhouse was, I suppose, a similar place – in a way. It was small and dark. And it was, effectively, a basement.
The Yardbirds isn’t very big, and it is fairly dark (it’s run by the Warlocks, so I wouldn’t expect it to be bright and colourful), but it has a fantastic atmosphere. The Roadhouse was ok. Apparently, the toilet light was a faint glimmer surrounded by flies and there were cobwebs on the toilet roll.
Still, we were there for the music.
Fyfe were the support. They weren’t bad, though not entirely my ‘thing’. That was fine, though. We were there for Foxes. We loved her voice and her look and her songs. Warrior, Youth and Echo in particular.
She came on just after 8, and I have to say, she performed her heart out. She danced and jumped and sang and it was a pleasure to hear that her voice didn’t need tweaking or auto-tuning. Foxes can sing, definitely.
My only criticism is that it was so short. I suppose, Foxes doesn’t have too extensive a repertoire currently. She has some great songs, but not a huge back catalogue to choose from. After around 45 minutes, she was gone. One encore and she disappeared with barely a goodbye (though she did come out and do a great meet-n-greet). It was a long way to go for such a short gig, I have to admit.
But, it was good. We, my wife and I, really enjoyed it. As time goes by, Foxes will increase her song list and the time she’s on stage. Next time I see her – and I’m sure I will go see her again, so that’s a good sign – hopefully she’ll be up there for longer.
After the gig, we went for another wander and grabbed a bite to eat. We ate our kebabs (mine being donner and my wife’s chicken) sitting on a wall, watching people come and go. A quick pop to Tesco for a drink, and a pub for the toilet, and we returned to the car park – to find I was 7 minutes over 4 hours p to a cost of an extra £5! Ouch! £13 in total to park! Oh well, we enjoyed ourselves so fair enough.
We arrived home at just after midnight. A long day. A long weekend in fact. But a good one.
So. Foxes. Hopefully the exposure from being the music to the Debenhams advert will bring in a lot of attention. She’s already been played on Radio 1, which is fab and well deserved. I predict good thing for her. I hope I’m right. She has a great voice is a real talent.
If you get chance, check her out.
Here’s a couple of videos I uploaded to Youtube of her performance. Forgive the quality – they’re from my phone and I was enjoying the show so my hand may not have kept up with Foxes movements!