Rockers the Kaiser Chiefs provided the spark to bring this year’s Forest Live gigs on Cannock Chase to a dramatic close with a brilliant performance.
The group played to more than 5,000 music fans at the Staffordshire beauty spot last night.
And frontman Ricky Wilson joked he had come a long way since playing at a Rugeley youth club in front of a dozen people 15 years ago promising to come back in another 15 years to a crowd of a million.
The sold-out performance, beginning at 9pm, was the final show in the sold-out Forest Live event.
James Bay kicked off proceedings on Friday night, followed by Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbott on Saturday. And the Kaiser Chiefs will live long in the audience’s memory. Fans enjoyed picnics and a drink as the sun went down during the warm up, but were quick to their feet when the band took to the stage.
Ricky pledged to give the packed crowd their moneys worth for the night after opening with Stay Together.
This was not just a performance by a band recycling old, well-rehearsed hits.
Yes, they played Modern Way and I Predict A Riot from the 2005 album Employment. But the band also delivered with their new material from their sixth studio album like Parachute and Hole in My Soul. And then there was Ruby, from the the 2007 album Yours Truly, Angry Mob, which turned the packed open air arena into a family karaoke.
This was family entertainment at its best.
A hardcore group of fans stood close to the front while others watched from the Hill rise surrounding the stage. It was a perfect end to a weekend and another year of Forest Live gigs on the Chase.
After Paloma Faith and Robert Plant last year, eyes will be on who organising can attract for next year. No pressure.
By Alex Ross