Mighty Oaks at Rock Café once again showed what they do best

The story is already quite well known. American Ian Hooper, Italian Claudio Donzelli and Brit Craig Saunders met in Berlin and soon after formed the band. They named themselves Mighty Oaks and since 2015, when they were pleasantly surprised at the Rock im Park festival, we have been writing about them continuously on the music server. This is the next chapter.

Live: Mighty Oaks

place: Rock Café, Prague
date: September 9, 2021
setlist: Land Of Broken Dreams, Mexico, By Your Side, Devil And The Deep Blue Sea, Bad Blood, Ghost, Tell Me What You’re Thinking, Forever, Brother, Just One Day, What You Fighting For, So Low, So High, The Great Unknown, Forget Tomorrow, Heavy, Driftwood Seat
The cover photo is for illustration only, we did not have a photographer at the concert.

Covid postponed the third Mighty Oaks concert in Prague for a while that Friday, but in the end we did see them. And they came to us in their new, dusty form. The last time they were here, they preceded the more famous The Lumineers in the Karlín Forum and had a third record before the release. Because of her, they switched to the BMG label, but it was probably a bad decision. On the one hand, there was more talk about them – the Czech music community also interviewed them, and a few domestic reviews were published. But one topic was repeated in them – everyone asked why the formation decided to give up their mix of wood, acoustic indie folk and on the new record it sounded astonishingly poppy. The question is whether it was an artistic intent or a label pushed there. But the magic was gone, the disappointment was felt from the reviews, the listeners felt cheated and often rejected the third record with the whole band. Fortunately, similar news reached Berlin. Mighty Oaks grabbed their noses and took advantage of the pandemic situation. They switched to Sony Music, returned to the studio, and in just fifteen months after the release of “All Things Go”, hurried to the fourth line-up of “Mexico.” Everything on it was fine again, and the listeners appreciated it. In the first week, in the first week, compared to the 29th place in the case of the previous studio, they reached the tenth place with the new one. No wonder the setlist has undergone changes. The latest collection was represented by nine pieces, while the previous one was represented only by the pair “Forget Tomorrow” and “Tell Me What You’re Thinking”, which is one of the better ones. Even before the arrival of the main stars, however, the stage belonged to the Slovak singer performing under the name TIMEA. After being nominated for Discovery of the Year at Radio_Head_Awards and the release of her debut EP, she is heading to Berlin from September, where she will study songwriting. And it’s definitely a good choice, because the current form shows that he still needs some training and time. Constructively, for her further development, we could say that although she has a fresh voice, her songs are drowning in monotony and nothing much happens in them. You need to play more with tempo, singing style, lyrics and arrangements themselves. At the moment, it sounds like when you heard one song from her, it’s like you’ve heard them all. Lana Del Rey’s final cover version was timely. She was quite similar for a long time. We keep our fingers crossed that the study will meet her expectations. Maybe he’ll show us more. Mighty Oaks doesn’t have to worry about anything like that anymore. The classic instrumental cast is complemented by, for example, a piano, violin, mandolin or wind accordion. It was she who decorated the title “Mexico” and not only she immediately sent all the pairs present into the arms of her dear halves. The swaying, tender songs, which were pleasantly stroking the fur, worked for the audience without exception. In addition, thanks to the extremely long applause, the singer was soon in a shared mood, so we learned a lot of interesting things about their origin.

For example, “Forever” is about people you meet as a child and you know right away that you will have them around for the rest of your life. “What You Fighting For” is again about a childhood friend from Seattle, who became a voter for Donald Trump and after several exchanges of views with a frontman on Facebook, he finally blocked him on all social networks. Or the central protagonist remembered how they had played about thirty concerts in the summer and how many of them were completely strange. In Germany, for example, they last played in the park on a summer evening, where spacing and sitting at tables were ordered at four. Many of those chairs weren’t even turned toward the stage, and they had to play quietly enough. They seemed to be there in addition and rather only disturbing many people who want to eat in peace. He also remembered taking his wife to Prague on romantic trips. A lot of those speeches were nice, funny, and it seemed that the joy of playing in a sold-out club was unadulterated and heartfelt. The only reproach can only be made to his voice, which this time exceptionally seemed a little tired and not as pure as usual. And also that no one handed out hot cocoa in a white cup with red polka dots around the club. Then it would be perfect.