09/28 | Lincoln Hall | Chicago, IL
09/30 | Shelter | Detroit, MI
10/01 | Mod Club | Toronto, ON
10/03 | Middle East | Boston, MA
10/04 | Rock n Roll Hotel | Washington, DC
10/05 | Foundry | Philadelphia, PA
10/06 | Music Hall of Williamsburg | New York, NY
11/10 | Olympia | Dublin, Ireland
12/03 | MOD | Hasselt, Belgium
12/04 | Luxor | Cologne, Germany
12/05 | Knust | Hamburg Germany
12/07 | Lido | Berlin, Germany
12/08 | Paradiso Nord | Amsterdam, Netherlands
12/10 | Roundhouse | London, UK
12/11 | Ritz | Manchester, UK
12/12 | Rock City | Nottingham, UK
12/14 | Garage | Aberdeen, UK
12/15 | Garage | Glasgow, UK
San Francisco (by the way of Ireland) band The Hooks (Keith Mulligan, Ronan Mulligan, Colin Delaney, Chet Hamby) took to the stage shortly after 8:00 p.m. This was a completely new band to me and I had not heard any of their songs before. A few of the people in the audience seemed to know their songs though.
Apparently the four-piece did two nationwide tours with the Pogues’ Shane MacGowan when they first formed in Ireland.
They played some pretty upbeat energetic guitar pop songs and held the audience over very well while waiting for the headlining act. They had catchy tunes and were a nice start to the evening.
The stage went dark with just some faint blue light left as some ambient synth music played with some spoken word in the background mentioning meteor showers and several voices counting up. Out came Ash to the cheers and delight of the audience. Tim grabbed his famous Gretsch Silver Jet as Mark took to the stage followed by Rick, who was wearing a possibly fan made, very bright colored ‘Ash Wars’ hat. (If you're an Ash fan I’m sure you know what that's about.)
Tim launched straight into ‘Lose Control’ to kick things off. This set list had no surprises if you're familiar with the 1977 album track listing. They tore through the songs in the exact order of the album with Tim switching guitars between the silver jet, a gold Les Paul and his trademark flying V. They kept the crowd the whole way getting huge cheers when launching into some of their best known hits like ‘Goldfinger’, ‘Angel Interceptor’, ‘Oh Yeah’, ‘Kung Fu’, and of course ‘Girl From Mars’, where Tim stopped in the bridge and asked the audience “Do you still love her?!” Answered with more cheers from the crowd. It was really nice for fans like me to hear the other tracks from 1977 that the band don't play very often. As many times as we've listened to that album all the songs are great. It felt like seeing them in their early days when they only had Trailer and 1977.
Mark did his usual wide stance stretches, throwing his bass all around him and putting his foot up on the monitors. Rick played hard and with a lot of energy on the drums, his face slightly hidden by his hat. Everything went smoothly except for one equipment malfunction with one of Tim's pedals that he quickly sorted out.
He asked the audience to count off the “last” song for him before starting ‘Darkside Lightside’. After which they said thank you and left the stage, only to return to the cheering audience a minute or too later.
They ripped into the encore with their classic single ‘Jack Names The Planets’. Next up was one of my favorite b sides that I was excited they decided on, ‘T. Rex’.
Tim then he began telling the crowd they were going to do cover from a band with two very attractive members, a band called ABBA. They do have a recorded version of ‘Does Your Mother Know?’ as a B-Side.
They finished out their set with some more Ash classics, ‘A Life Less Ordinary’, ‘Orpheus’, then a newer tune from ‘Kablammo!’ (the title track from their 2015 album), ‘Let’s Ride’, ‘Shining Light’ (not on set list), and then capped things off with what is probably their most known song in the U.S. ‘Burn Baby Burn’.
They took to the front of the stage and took a bow and thanked the audience with Tim saying they're working on a new album and hopefully they'll be back next year!
Ash at the Independent, San Francisco (22 Sep 2016)