Procol Harum

the Pale

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Procol Harum at Nottingham, UK

Setlist • 14 May 2017

Brooker, Dunn, Pegg, Phillips, Whitehorn
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I Told on You [Tasty electric piano fills from Josh; GW using his new guitar, a Gibson 335 copy. Sounds great]
Homburg [Even the people in front of us, who knew 'only AWSoP', recognised this with pleasure]
Nothing but the Truth [I tried hard not to listen to this at the soundcheck so as to be surprised by it in concert. A fine song ... sparkling with juicy Hammond]
Last Chance Motel
[GW moves on to guitar #2. Harmony voices sounding great. Lead vocal 'remix' in the dénouement]
Pandora's Box
[very sprightly ... faster than usual, I believe]
As Strong as Samson
[new piano intro, spontaneously developed, and effective. Wondrous bass fill before the 'Ain't no use' coda]
Sunday Morning
[Gary tells the audience that the words are exhibited at Tower Hill tube station. Someone yells out that they saw it! 'Were you being held in the Tower of London?' asks GB]
[the falling 'Psycho' chords sounded odd when I first heard this number: now they seem smoothly integrated and essential to the song]
A Salty Dog
[Our audience neighbours, in their late sixties but at their 'first pop concert', loved this and praised its mystery and dynamic range. Kudos here to Josh's Yamaha, Montague]

Before the music can continue, GB stands at the piano fettling his 'in-ear monitors' with a running commentary including 'This is professional, isn't it?' So completely relaxed and freewheeling in his verbal manner on stage, yet so completely transported in his performance of any great songs. Remains an enigma!

Image of the Beast [starts and ends with growly, sinister organ. GW now on third guitar of the evening. All loose and funky. Hilariously inapposite jazz ending (as mocked in Yours if you Want me) inserted at the piano]
An Old English Dream
[inventive piano, and nice ;slack time before certain verses. Preceded by tales of Gary's 'dream' of being run down by a Nottingham tram ... 'that would be your last accident ... unless it only cut off your feet'
Grand Hotel
[a bit more anti-Nicola Sturgeon riffing! Looking back, GB recalls that there were '15' people last time Procol played here, in 1995. Geoff suggests the present audience are that small congregation's descendants] 
Can't Say That
[GB likes to say 'Novum' in a deep, Morgan Freemanesque voice. Free-form start ... guitar solo, organ solo ... terrific singing ... and a mighty playout]
Cerdes (Outside the Gates of)
[the line 'who only sips his crème de menthe' has a real timeless quality! Marvellous guitar from the Duke of Gravesend]
['Let's sit here for a while and hate our neighbours'. Very amusing and precise]
[Josh gets up and removes a drinks can from the Leslie during verse 2. One forgets how strange the syncopations here sounded in 1967. The piano gap after 'only die' is different every night]

The Only One [preceded by a nice mention for the Merch team ... 'without them, I can't pay the band'. This new classic is loudly applauded by what GB called 'a cultured audience']
A Whiter Shade of Pale [three verses, piano solo, guitar solo, stately ending to a great concert before a warm audience. Even though the venue was not full, the applause was generous, and rightly so]


18 songs altogether: 2 From Procol Harum   from Shine on Brightly
1 From A Salty Dog   From Home   from Broken Barricades
1 From Grand Hotel   From Exotic Birds and Fruit 1 from Procol's Ninth
  From Something Magic   From The Prodigal Stranger 1 from The Well's on Fire
8 From Novum 2 non-album tracks Lovely to chat to so many merch customers and hear how much they enjoyed the concert.


Procol dates in 2017 | Booking

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