October 15, 2009 - De Voorste Venne, Drunen (NL)

It took Kayak only a week of rehearsing to get into shape for performing sixteen live shows in order to promote their latest release Letters From Utopia (see review). Despite that short period, the audience saw an almost perfect musical machine perform their second show of the tour at the small, but nice and cosy theatre De Voorste Venne in Drunen. It happens quite regularly that a band sounds slightly chaotic at the beginning of a tour. That is the main reason why I prefer to attend live shows at the end of a new tour. In my opinion, that doesn’t apply for Kayak for they didn’t make any mistakes on stage. However, after their wonderful concert singer Cindy Oudshoorn honestly revealed that the band dropped a few stitches though…

As expected, the concert started with the opening tune from Letters From Utopia. Rhea got a strong adaptation and a warm welcome applause as well, followed by the title track. After two pieces from Coming Up For Air, the band played one of the evening’s highlights. The fine instrumental piece Irene has become a true Kayak-classic that gives guitarist Joost Vergoossen the opportunity to show all his talents. The title track of Kayak’s comeback album Close To The Fire is another strong classic. It’s a typical Kayak-song and a favourite piece for all who loved the band in its early days. However, the audience very much appreciated the two rock operas made by Kayak. Both Merlin and Nostradamus contain lots of drama, passion and emotion. During the songs from Merlin, Cindy Oudshoorn and Edward Reekers performed a strong duet in When The Seer Looks Away. The emotional way Cindy sang her part in this duet sent shivers down my spine. What a passion!

The songs from Coming Up For Air and Letters From Utopia dominated the second set. However, they also performed some tracks from their debut album like Mammoth and the title track See See The Sun. During the latter song, I got goose bumps all over, because of the fabulous harmony singing! The material from their second rock opera Nostradamus brought me in a good mood as well. The regular set ended with two Dutch hit singles from the seventies: Starlight Dancer and Chance For A Life Time. The audience liked it all very much and brought the band back to the stage for the encore section.

Most people looked out for Ruthless Queen, a big hit for the band in 1978 sung by Edward Reekers. Some people still think that he’s the only one who can sing Ruthless Queen properly. Full Circle is mostly on the set list, because it’s a typical track for the audience to participate with in hand clapping and yelling. No exception this time, the song made almost everybody stand up from the comfortable chairs. Kayak ended their fine performance with the appropriate song Sad To Say Farewell from the Periscope Life album.

When I got back in the lobby for a drink, I could only conclude that Kayak is still one of the best or maybe the best live band from The Netherlands giving the audience a perfect evening of high quality entertainment.

Henri Strik (edited by Peter Willemsen)

Setlist Kayak:

Set 1:
Letters From Utopia
Coming Up For Air
Close To The Fire
Because I...
When The Seer Looks Away
Niniane (Lady Of The Lake)
Let The Record Show
Nobody Wins

Set 2:
Before The Angels Fell
For All The Wrong Reasons
See See The Sun
Act Of Despair
Selfmade Castle
Starlight Dancer
Chance For A Life Time

Ruthless Queen
Full Circle
Sad To Say Farewell

Pictures by Henri Strik

Click on the picture to enlarge.

Line up Kayak:

(left to right)
Joost Vergoossen:
guitars, backing vocals
Ton Scherpenzeel:
keyboards, backing vocals
Jan van Olffen:
Edward Reekers:
lead & backing vocals, additional keyboards, percussion
Cindy Oudshoorn:
lead & backing vocals, percussion
Rob Vunderink:
guitars, lead and backing vocals
Pim Koopman:
drums, percussion, backing vocals

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