Zenyatta Mondatta

Dublin, IE
Leixlip Castlewith Squeeze, Skafish, John Otway, Q-Tips, U2
Police concert a damp squib...

It could have been a monster bash, nut it turned out a damp squib when The Police, one of the world's top rock bands, topped the bill of a one-day festival in the grounds of Leixlip Castle yesterday.

Despite an estimated attendance of 25,000 and intermittent sunshine, the concert, which grossed well over £150,000 in ticket sales, failed to live up to expectations. largely because of some very bad sound problems.

There were complaints that ''bouncers'' armed with batons and sticks waded into the crowd to clear the area in front of the stage. After the concert one of the men in charge of security, Mr Frank Warner, denied any knowledge of what happened.

Although the concert started at noon with the Moon Dogs, followed by Q-Tips, many people were lucky to arrive in time to see U2. The young Dublin band played an excellent set of both old and new material. Indeed, their performance was the highlight of the day though John Otway and the Squeeze managed to get through an enjoyable set before the Police took the stage at about 6.50pm.

The Police opened up their long awaited performance with two new songs, neither of which were over-impressive. However, the crowd grew more responsive when the band launched into 'Walking On The Moon'. It was older material which saved the day for the band, which was beset by sound problems and some minor distractions such as flying bottles. One, in fact, hit drummer Stewart Copeland, who reacted angrily as did the rest of the band.

The incident occurred just as the band was nearing the end of its performance.

They finished on a high note with 'Roxanne' and 'I Can't Stand Losing You' but by then much of the fun was disappearing as rain began to fall.

(c) The Irish Times by Joe Breen