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Club Riga, March 28th 2003

Review By Guy Rickard

The bad news . . .


Phenomenal Stuff

So, almost twelve months since their last outing, Fragile return to "Saany Sarfend", with a new ivory tickler in tow, and an expectant crowd knocking on 200, I reckon, keen to make sure Fragile's enforced hiatus hasn't affected them.

I've got good news and bad news about the gig.

Let's get the bad news out the way first........1) I lost a fiver somewhere 2) Jon Bastable's trousers!

The good news.......a two hour set, two encores, a great set list, Steve Carney's voice from Long Distance Runaround onwards was absolutely superb (before that.. only excellent, I'm afraid Steve!), and Max Legroom (bearing in mind he's quadrupled the floor space his predecessor took up) slotted in seamlessly. Sure, I felt there were a couple of times when the keyboard sound wasn't quite 100% faithful, but as Steve Carney pointed out...what Max has done in familiarising himself with the incredibly complex music in such a short time is fantastic. Welcome Max, and long may you tinkle!

I won't go through the set list, but all the classics were there, played with passion and played faultlessly. Highlights for me, and there were plenty, were the medley (with a cracking Gates of Delirium), Yours is No Disgrace, All Good People and Close to the Edge improved still further since last April. I was really pleased to hear Starship Trooper allowed to reach its rightful climax on this outing too. Phenomenal stuff. Thanks guys!

So overall, another fantastic gig, from a great band who, criminally, weren't included in Classic Rock's recent summary of Tribute bands. My email's on the way to the Editor now (and so should yours be). A number of the guys I met at the gig were off to see Yes at the Reunion gig this Summer - they may get the real Yes on stage, but I guarantee they won't get 2 solid hours of the best music Yes ever committed to vinyl. If you haven't seen Fragile, put it on your "Things to do before I start liking Classical" list today, and get off to St Albans or Rochdale NOW!!

Steve, Tom, Mitch, Rob, Jon and Max......git back dahn 'ere soon!!!!

Steve ponders a mixed performance?

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