05.28.03 London, England

Astoria

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Comments/Reviews

anonymous's picture

This concert is a fine example of an artist at peace with himself...what a show!'Burn One Down'and 'Waiting on an Angel'were my highlights.The fact that there wasn't major media coverage proved not to be a problem for bhic.They don't need it... word of mouth does the trick.Can't wait for november!Also if you are going to the brixton gig and feel like talking during an accouctic song.....bite your tongue!

anonymous's picture

Coming all the way from Sweden to see Ben live and I can't be happier. It was great. I will probably come back to see him at Brixton Academy too if I can. Blessed To Be A Witness was a highlight but everything was great.
Just hope the people that couldn't shut up during the acustic set won't show up at Brixton. Cheers!

davehartley21113's picture

First time I've ever seen Ben Harper and his crims in action. What a gig! The atmosphere was amazing....people dancing and watching in total ore of what can only be described as a genius of our time.

From the lyrically powerful "Excuse Me Mr." things got off to a start. We were then thrown around in a musical roller coaster of emotions. We were rocked by "Temporary Remedy" and "Ground On Down", but pushed over the edge by Juan Nelsons' super phat, super fast, and super smooth bass solos. Backed up by tight, punchy drums and fast percussion (both amazing!). We then get caressed into "Welcome To The Cruel World" which is becoming more and more true as more wars begin around the world. We then danced our way through the rest of the set which included: the great cover of "Sexual Healing", the new "Diamonds On The Inside", the great "With My Own Two Hands" and the classic "Burn One Down".

Knowing it wasn't over we stuck around awaiting the encore, this was to be an encore to remember. Out walks Ben without the Crims and begins a touching string of classic Ben Harper heart renchers.

Rejoined by the band things just build up and build up. Ending the gig (on the second encore) with "Like A King" and "I'll Rise" I think everyone walked away feeling they had just experienced something massive.

Massive respect must be given to the Ben and the Crims. Never before I have I seen such musicianship and dedication to a show. They played every song as if it were the last and for a solid 2 and a half hours I don't think my jaw left the floor.

If you have the chance you must go. This was the best gig I have ever been to, and I'm pretty sure it always will be.

Respect to you sir, you are living proof that there is more to what is considered todays music industry. You are inspiration and hope to many of us musicians that we can get somewhere too.

anonymous's picture

Having saved to visit the US this Summer just to see Ben, the Astoria date was a welcome surprise, but nothing prepared us for the quality and passion of the performance. With the only down-side being a few brain donors shouting out during the acoustic set, the performance was flawless.
It's so rare to see a band drop into an extended jam and still hold onto the audience. Juan Nelson proved his icon status and Leon Mobley made us believe he has six pairs of hands.
As for Ben, his soul searching ballads (Waiting on an Angel, Walk Away etc.) were moody and sincere, while the hard edge to songs like 'So High, So Low' and 'Ground on Down' got the audience moving at the drop of a hat.
By the way, if you look up 'anger' in the dictionary next year, it should say "Listen to 'Like a King'!". An awesome gig!

Have to gloat by saying that we bumped into Ben and Greg Kusrtin earlier in the day and were touched by their friendliness and a sense that they genuinely appreciated our thanks. (The Photos came out great too, Greg. Many thanks!)

Counting down to Brixton!. . .

anonymous's picture

Having only ever seen Ben before at Big Day out with Metallica, this gig playing stuff desigened for his own audience was just massively better. I was a bit underwhelmed by the total lack of coverage he recieved by the English music press in total, when will we learn that Ben is far better than Will Young. I thought the reggae tunes were awesome and the steal my kisses with Juan's epic bass solo. The acoustic encore was clearly a highlight, it was so emotional and the crowd clearly loved it. I felt as if Ben might have underestimated his fan base in England, he's gotta make it a regular stop on his tour route.
Peace

anonymous's picture

I'm still trying to get my head around that awesome experience last night. It was absolutely brilliant! Ben was mind boggling, he's such a great musician. And the Innocent Criminals are amazing! So much energy and passion in the music, I felt exhausted by the time it finished. Bring on November!!

anonymous's picture

This was the 2nd time I had seen BHIC and they were again extraordinary!! Its been a 3 year wait to see them but definately worth it. The highlights of the night were Burn One Down, Sexual Healing and the amazingly evocative rendition of Blessed to be a witness which left me in complete awe of their brilliance. The only let down was the unneccesary noise from the crowd during Ben aucoustic songs... in Sydney three years back the crowd were dead silent to the point where we were all holding our breaths as not to disturb Ben which added an incredible energy and atmosphere to moment.

anonymous's picture

My first time seeing Ben and the guys and i was blown away!! I didn't realise Ben had started standing up, in a way it was good, but i don't think he looked too comfortable.
Juan Nelson is a legend, i loved the extended jams and when he got his nipple out....it made it that bit better!
I think I enjoyed the acoustic set more because it was so beautiful and soulful but the people calling out spoilt it.
The highlight was probably Blessed to be a Witness because it was so unexpected. Thank You Ben for a wonderful evening.

anonymous's picture

The show was great! I've seen Ben live twice before back in '97 and '98 and it was so different but still fantastic. The new reggae tunes were great and he finished with an incredible version of 'Like a king' and 'I'll rise'. There was this great group of about four blonde Australian (?) girls at the back sitting on a wall as I was leaving. One of them spoke to me. Are you reading this? :-) You know who you are! If you are the stunning blonde one who gave me a smile as we stood in queue to get out of that claustrophobic corridor at the end then drop me an email!

The only thing I didn't like about the gig were people yelling out offensive language during the acoustic set and the people singing along & drowning out Ben. What's all that about?! :-)