Fools Paradise – Scooter Weekend 16th June 2012

Sex, drugs and Rock’n’Roll hit wet and windy Congleton last weekend with a bang- literally. Fool’s Paradise played at the Charity Scooter Weekend in aid of Air Ambulance.

It kicked off with Fool’s Paradise on Saturday afternoon, with all the fans hanging round their tent for a miniature acoustic session which got the crowd ready for the night ahead. Fools revealed they were playing on a back of a wagon – this gave the fans something to look forward to all day as it was a unique stage set up.

Everywhere you looked there was either Pretty Green parka’s or bomber jackets, checked buttoned up shirts or buttoned up polo’s and desert boots or original docs. There was alot of Paul Weller look-a-likes which is understandable saying he’s The Mod God!

In the camping field it was undeniable that Fool’s Paradise was centre of attention and it continued until they left on Sunday! Fools were set to play at half ten so before that they were all chilled and getting ready for a hectic, long night with no sleep and lots of drinking.

Time went pretty fast and next minute people are running round saying Fools are going to play. People were filling up there plastic cups and heading towards the front of the crowd.  I see at the back Rob talking his mum; good luck message maybe? I don’t know but she wore his parka for him! Proud mother right there!

Sound checking was going on for a long time but that can’t be criticized when in the end it was spot on. There was 30 seconds of ‘Set Me Free’ played to test it out just for perfection, it worked well as the audience started chanting “fool’s paradise say fool’s paradise”.

First song of the night by Fools was an old northern soul track – ‘Instrumental’; originally played by Just Brothers and it was called ‘Sliced Tomatoes’. It showed off what the group is made up of; talented, original and quality musicians. Rob tells the audience he’s been drinking all day, just like everyone else but this didn’t stop the mod influenced quartet playing the way they did.

The first drum beats by Dan in the second track ‘Blow Them All Away’ seized power of the audience as everyone gathered forward and the chaos began. The energy in Rob Deacon was electric. I took a glimpse into the crowd about nine tenths of the people were singing along to the memorable lyrics.

That night Fool’s Paradise played three new tracks. The first was ‘Nothing to lose’ with it being the crowds first listen by the look on the faces and the movement in their bodies they loved it. I loved it. It had a hint of Rolling Stones about it.

First shout out of the night went out to “everyone who brought Fool’s Paradise t-shirts”. Everywhere I looked you could at least see one just clinging from someone. Brad strummed his guitar and the crushing turned into swaying as they slowed it down with ‘My Time’. Arms were up in the air and the Liam Gallagher impressions were arising. You know you watching a good band when the bass player Steve has that concentration face on that really pulls the song off.

Tambourine is exchanged and the head banging commences. ‘Got That Feeling’ is where I saw the Dan and Rob really connect, this shows the band enjoy what they do and they aren’t stopping anytime soon, thankfully. Brad really showed off in his guitar solo and all eyes were on him.

It’s another new track ‘Dreamer’. It had a Stone Roses sound to it which I enjoyed for a first listen and by the comments given in the audience they liked it too. The front man Rob really gave the performance something to watch rather than listen to with his energetic dance moves. Outstanding performance from them!

The last of the new tracks was played. ‘Devil In Disguise’ the tambourine was exchanged for the guitar and it sounded like a Weller song with that hint of funk. First listen again was brilliant couldn’t really ask for more from them.

Second shout out of the night was “Happy father’s day” just before ‘Set me Free’ was played. Moshing begins and the beer is thrown. Everyone was echoing Rob with “set me free” and a group of lads are flung into the hedge where the electric cables are and BAM! Silence covers the field for about 10 seconds before everyone erupts into laughter. The audience continue to cheer Fool’s on with “Fool’s Paradise say Fool’s Paradise”. Dan Bailey keeps the drum beat going just too entertain the fans and then Rob joins in with tambourine so the audience aren’t totally let down and still have something to listen to and enjoy. This shows that whatever happens Fool’s Paradise will always entertain the fans – sign of a successful band right there. Brad, Dan, Rob and Steve exit the stage leaving the crowd in anticipation. After a lengthy 10 minutes or so they are back and the chanting sets off again. First thing said was “thanks to you b*****ds for jumping in the hedge”.

After that little disaster they soon brought it back with a cover of The Who, ‘My Generation’. The audience got crazed again like previously but made sure they stayed away from the hedge. That exceptional performance was over and they announced that, that is it.  The audience requested them to complete ‘Set Me Free’ but it didn’t happen. Personally I don’t think it was their fault, I think they had to be off stage at a certain time.

Overall great performance from Fool’s Paradise, even with that minor malfunction.

By Lucee Clarke

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