Green and gray
By Rosanne Hiles
David Gray was the latest act to wow the crowds in picturesque Thetford Forest on a glorious summer evening in Suffolk. He played all the hits and regaled everyone with banter, including the shock admission that he's not God-like.
Gray was in no mood to warm-up the crowd slowly and had us buzzing early on when he performed his hit Sail Away as early as the second song. This was clearly Gray showing his intent on delivering a set that would thrill the audience as it contained many of the fans favourites as well as some new material.
The new stuff was a mix of fast and slow tracks that delighted his fans and promised much from his forthcoming album.
Mobiles at ten paces
Fugitive was the first new track to be played and the crowd lapped it up. However the track that is sure to become a new favourite was Jackdaw which is an upbeat piece played on his piano.
Gray himself clearly enjoyed playing it and would no doubt have been pleased to see so many of the audience dancing along. The title track of the album Draw The Line also had its debut and was another up-tempo track on his signature acoustic guitar.
Throughout his one hour and forty five minute set, Gray interacted with the audience and delivered some of his observations about playing on the Suffolk- Norfolk border. He wondered if the dwellers from either side are locked in a bitter battle, deep in the trees over which is the superior county.
The audience were also treated to a spontaneous track all about the closure of the Little Chef on the A11, clearly a stop-off point for Gray on his visits to the area, as he sang of how he will miss the rubbish tea. However when all the silliness and banter was done, he performed powerful renditions of his hit tracks.
Babylon's still burning
Babylon was the next one to have the crowd singing along and that was performed with the freshness of a brand new song. Gray looked as if he still loves performing live, revelling in the spotlight and applauding the audience back after nearly every song.
As the evening turned slightly chilly, the next treat was This Year's Love and once again the crowd sang back every word.
Remembering the Little Chef
The set wasn't without its difficulties though. Early on Gray forgot the words to one of his tracks, but managed to show great humour, saying he was just breaking down the boundaries between performer and fans, claiming that he wasn't god-like, as many in the crowd would have thought.
The best however was saved for last. Please Forgive Me was a lighter-waving moment, or in the technical age, a mobile phone-waving moment.
In the darkness of the forest, this provided a very fitting finale and the crowd left wanting more.
(David Gray was at the Thetford Forest High Lodge Visitor Centre, Santon Downham on Friday 10 July 2009. This review was a voluntary contribution from a BBC Suffolk website-user.
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last updated: 13/07/2009 at 16:47
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