Danny Cavanagh, Universe 217 at Bat City (2010)

Bat City (Athens, Greece)

Danny Cavanagh, Universe 217
24/03/2010 @ Bat City Wednesday night and after a weird day at work it was […]
By Harry Papadopoulos
March 20, 2010

24/03/2010 @ Bat City

Wednesday night and after a weird day at work it was time for a trip in the center of Athens to cover the acoustic show of Danny Cavanagh (ANATHEMA). Having the luck of Gladstone Gander (the older readers should know that duck) as far as finding a parking slot, I arrived fifteen minutes before the start of the supporting act set.

Around 21:00 UNIVERSE 217 came on a thing called "stage". Since Bat City Club originally is a bar and not a live club, the stage was really small! I mean, the band members couldn't even make two steps. Another problem was that the stage stood beside the entrance and everyone was just standing there and didn't move to the back of the bar. Surely this bar is not suitable for gigs. Sorry about the mumbling, let's go back to the live show itself.

For those that don't have a clue about UNIVERSE 217, unfortunately it's too hard for me to explain their music in words. It's better to check their MySpace page instead. The sound was quite good for a place like that and the four piece band gave us three quarters of good music. Tania has a great voice and the rest of the band was 100% professional, but the bad thing was that (since I wasn't in the front rows) there were moments we couldn't even see the frontwoman since she was kneeling most of the time. A good performance by UNIVERSE 217 and I'm looking forward to see them live again in a more appropriate venue.

By that time the bar was overcrowded, something that - as I found out later - was the reason a boy and a girl fainted. The younger ladies were ecstatic just with the idea of seeing Danny and I was trying to get a better spot in order to take a couple of photos. Time was 22:00 when Danny came on stage with his guitar. After trying to fix the sound (he didn't do any kind of soundcheck, as he said) he opened his setlist with "Deep". The audience broke into a loud applaud and Danny seemed to be in a good mood. The sound wasn't that good at the first two-three songs, but it got better, at least for us that we were near the stage. You see, the bar has an open space in front and whoever was standing over there couldn't listen a thing, not to mention some idiots who were talking and laughing all the time paying no attention to the music or the fans that wanted to listen to Danny.

After telling us not to smoke at least in front of the stage because he couldn't sing, he played some of the most well-known songs of ANATHEMA from the "Alternative 4" era and on, like "Lost Control", "Fragile Dreams", "Forgotten Hopes" and "A Natural Disaster" among others. Of course there were some covers in the setlist, too. We listened to "Division Bell" and Wish You Were Here" (PINK FLOYD), "Big Love" (FLEETWOOD MAC), "Stairway To Heaven" (LED ZEPPELIN) and a song form one of his beloved bands of all times (as he stated), "Wasted Years" by IRON MAIDEN. Some of the covers were good, like the first three ones, but as far as the two last, he should probably reconsider and not play them again, especially the MAIDEN one. Some metalheads in the audience applauded his try, but in my humble opinion those songs were not a good choice.

Somewhere in the middle of his setlist he called Katerina on stage (a girl that despite her anxiety did show us she has a great voice) and sung "Parisienne Moonlight", "Natural Disaster" and "No Surprises" (RADIOHEAD) together. After almost two hours, Danny left the stage without an encore, even though his fans waited for something more. Hence, it's time for conclusions:

  1. A very good support act.
  2. A nice show for die-hard fans of the non-Metal era of Danny.
  3. Despite some minor problems, the sound was quite good.
  4. The Greek audience is not suitable to attend acoustic shows. Most people were talking all the time and managed to annoy even me (not a core fan of what ANATHEMA and Danny are playing the last couple of years).
  5. We don't have proper live venues in Greece (except one or two).
  6. Some songs weren't written to be played acoustically.
  7. A two-hour acoustic show is a bit tedious without a break.
  8. Having two fans fainting is something everyone (fans, owners of every bar/club/venue, promoters) should take into consideration.

(photos by Harry)


Danny Cavanagh

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