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Fragile, At The Cartoon, Croydon, August 25th 2000

By Martin Davenport

Fragile played at the Cartoon, in Croydon on Friday, August 25th. This was the band's second appearance at the venue within a couple of months following a midweek appearance as part of the warm up towards the live CD recording. As the band and those who went to see them found out the Cartoon is a rather different place on a Friday . . . Friday is "rock" night. If you want to get a picture of the scene think of the "The Blues Brothers" when the band visit "Bob's Country Bunker". Now, replace the brothers with Fragile, the good ol' boys and girls in the bunker with a studded leather tribe of thrash metal freaks and "Stand By Your Man" with "Paranoid" and you'll just about have it right! Okay, so it wasn't quite that bad so here's Martin Davenport to tell you what he made of it all!

"Ten Pints of Snakebite"

This Gig must go down as one of the more difficult crowds that Fragile have played to this year. Although the venue was a good one for live music unfortunately a large majority of the crowd had come expecting their weekly dose of heavy rock with the main ingredients being incessant loud music and at least ten pints of Snakebite!

Despite the advertised time of 9.00 Fragile were not allowed to take the stage until 11.00. For those who had come to hear Fragile they treated us to a storming two hour set of classic Yes music. It was a tribute to their professionalism that they performed with a vigour and brilliance that many bands would not have bothered with in the face of such an apathetic crowd. The new members of Fragile have fitted in so well that the group sounded as though they had been playing together for years.


"Cheers Of Recognition"

They started their set with a blistering version of "Cinema" which reminded me of the 90125 tour when Yes always started with this song . This moved into the most difficult song to play. "Siberian Khartru". Other highlights of the set included Steve's vocals on" Soon". the extended "Yes medley" including " Awaken " and an exciting percusive excerpt from "Ritual" .The band finished things of with their interpretation of" Starship Trooper". I was pleased to see that the band had not lost their sense of humour as they slotted in a few bars of "Whole Lotta Love" and Paranoid " which drew cheers of recognition from the mob at the bar!.

An excellent set from an excellent band for a difficult audience. Catch them on their "Roundabout 2000" tour and at the same time purchase the superb "Live at the Half Moon" CD ,you won't be dissapointed.


Martin Davenport


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