Tuesday, 15 July 2008

Visits to Madrid, Spain and Luxembourg

I got back from a weekend in Luxembourg yesterday afternoon and have caught a nasty feverish cold, probably from the air conditioning on the small plane I flew back to London on. I rarely ever get sick like this, so it's a real pain, but that's life. The trips away were worth it.

In the last week I have been to Madrid and Luxembourg for shows and to look around the cities which were first time visits for me, so there was loads to do. Madrid is a great city and of course, the weather was hot and sunny which meant I made the most of lounging outside in the sunshine by the swimming pool at the luxury Wellington Hotel, which was just ten minutes walk away from the Palacios De Deportes arena where the Under 18 Festival was last Thursday, July 10th. Several bands performed, but I was there to photograph Panic at the Disco and Simple Plan. Typical that I happened to walk past Pierre. Jeff and Seb from Simple Plan sitting outside a cafe while walking to my hotel from the metro, they had flown into Spain from Montreal and had a rare two days off at home. Later that evening, it was an evening off for the bands and I was at their hotel when Panic at the Disco and Simple Plan all met for the first time. Of course, I'd met all these guys before, but I hadn't spoken to any of Panic at the Disco since August 2007 when they were in London for the annual Kerrang! Awards. David from Simple Plan watched some of the PATD performance from the side of the stage and I was lucky enough to be able to watch from standing in the photo pit for all of the show. It was the first time PATD had ever visited Spain and you could tell that they were enjoying themselves from the brilliant show they did. Brendon's voice sounds better than ever and there was plenty of crowd interaction and talking in between songs.
Just three days before Madrid, I went to see Panic at the Disco at Southampton Guildhall, but didn't have a photo pass, I only managed to get some live captures on video from that show.
I missed the Panic at the Disco press time and meet and greet at the Under 18 Festival which was a let-down, because I was out with a friend having some food, but I did get lots of photos of Simple Plan together backstage. There are a lot of live photos of both bands, too.

The day after I got back from Madrid I flew to Luxembourg for a rare Simple Plan show in a small club venue in Luxembourg city. The venue was only 800 capacity, so everyone got a good view and it was a lot more fun and intimate than any other shows I've seen this year. The band performed a random cover version of the Guns 'n' Roses classic Don't Cry before doing their usual fun made-up song about the city they were performing in (this time it was in French) and it was just brilliant. I managed to get that performance by Pierre on video. Lots of the really dedicated Simple Plan fans I know from England, Holland, Belgium and Germany travelled to see this gig because it was in such a small venue. I'd never been to Luxembourg before, either and walked all over the main old city centre and along the bridges and the views were beautiful.

All the Simple Plan photos and videos will be featured here:



All videos from the Panic at the Disco show in Southampton, the Under 18 Festival and Simple Plan in Luxembourg can be viewed on here:

For all the photos from the Under 18 Festival, go here to the Members Area and to SophieRockshots:


I've been experiencing problems with the photo uploader on Virtual Festivals, but it should be resolved soon, as this is the site where all my big concerts and festivals photos go into.

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