Vibe for Philo - Tribute to Phil Lynott 2007
It’s the start of a brand new year and what better way to kick it off with the annual Vibe for Philo. Already 21 years have past since iconic front man Phil Lynott left this world on that fateful day of January 4th 1986. The countless tribute bands around the world are testimony that many still sorely miss him.
On the flight over I overheard a conversation of two Dutch U2 fans. Talking about U2 being the best thing ever to emerge from Ireland, these ignorant bastards forget one thing. Thin Lizzy and Phil Lynott really incorporated traditional Irish music and the Irish soul in their own music. It truly gives a feeling that they actually were from Ireland. U2 on the other hand sounds American. Best thing from Ireland…right.
No less than 8 acts are paying tribute tonight in the venue called Vicar Street, so performance time is limited to a half an hour for most acts. Opener Gnasher chooses to perform mainly rare stuff. Songs like ‘Cruisin In The Lizzy Mobile’, ‘Things Ain’t Working Down At The Farm’ and ‘Sitamoia’ are examples of songs that probably were never performed by Thin Lizzy themselves. They feature on the box set released in 2001. The original recordings aren’t exactly blessed with the best sound. Gnasher though performs these songs with so much energy it really shows off the richness of Phil’s music. And equipped with a great sound it’s just the cream of the crop. What a great performance, these guys should be the headlining act. And half an hour is way too short.
These youngsters from Dublin itself were allowed to play for only 15 minutes so they decided to make it an acoustic performance. These teenage kids who weren’t even born when Phil died performed renditions of ‘Sarah’ and ‘Wild One’ brilliantly. Timeless music indeed!
Did Opeth just walked on stage? No, it can’t be, but Renegade sure made me think so. They strike me as a band that does the tribute thing as an extra to earn a living. Because do you really need a six string bass to play Thin Lizzy songs? Hmm…strange enough I can't find their website. The metal like approach from Renegade of the Lizzy songs do give an interesting view to Phil's music. If Thin Lizzy emerged now, how would they have sounded like? Well, tonight it even created a moshpit in the audience. Slam dancing in the moonlight indeed.
Dosh Neagle actually did play with the great man himself. After Thin Lizzy broke up Phil tried it again with a new group called Grand Slam. Unfortunately during their brief existence they couldn’t get a record deal. And of course when he died it was end of story.
Again we witness a different approach. That is really the first time I see the entire guitar solos played with the flute. Dosh Neagle sure has special friends. Almost unbelievable is the rendition of ‘Parisienne Walkways’. Even the minute-long single high pitch guitar note, characteristic for the song, is played. Quite the lung capacity indeed!
The Lizzy Boys are back in town. Their second time at the tribute concert and, oh yes they deserve it to be back. The Japanese are known to be absolute copycats; The Lizzy Boys from Japan are no different. Although the singer states in a brief chat to the audience that his English is ‘vely poor’ their musical skills are far from that. They treated the audience with superb renditions of the ‘Boys Are Back In Town’ and ‘Jailbreak’. And I do have to mention this, a Japanese band performing ‘Chinatown’ you can’t be more tongue in cheek than that. Personally they gave me a huge lump-in-my-throat moment during the ‘Black Rose’ guitar solo. So perfectly played and with the exact feel and timing I can't say the Boys are an amateur rock band. They should erase that statement from their website. Definitely the highlight of the evening.
This local guy just performed one song on his bagpipe, the traditional and Lizzy ‘s breakthrough song: ‘Whisky In The Jar’. Phil’s mother Philomena joined him surprisingly on stage. She can’t sing, and admitted it. She came on stage to say thank you to all the fans who keep visiting this event. With so many people still loving his music it helped her to process the death of her son.
Introduced by Philomena it has to be said that this lady and her and band were facing an almost impossible task to entertain a tired audience. Even though they play a short set of songs, including Phil’s tribute song to Elvis: ‘King’s Call’. By time they hit the stage it is past midnight and after almost four hours of Lizzy music a lot of people were already heading home. A shame cause she really has a good voice and the band played really well.
One o’ clock at night, the evening was all right. The girls are all wet from Cold Sweat.
Just the die-hard fans stayed. So the party did not fade. Cold Sweat from Finland played well and danced in the moonlight. Couldn’t call it a performance of thunder and light. It was running late and I guess that it was their fate. It was almost closing time and you couldn’t get any more beer. Is it fighting they fear? It resulted in performing for a half empty Vicar Street, just a few stayed on their feet. It was a great tribute to the man. Phil will always be remembered and not just by the die-hard fan.