Busted Must Be Glad They Crashed The Races!

Jockey Club Live presents An Evening At The Races with Busted 

Wednesday 20th July 2016

Sandown Park, Esher, Surrey, United Kingdom

Kieran White/KWMEDIA

The Jockey Club Live is a very interesting venture which sees a series of live music events and horse racing which are coordinated with famous racecourses from around the UK and Live Nation UK for an entire day of entertainment in an open-air setting.

Artists for this years’ events have included The Corrs, Tears For Fears, Little Mix, Sir Tom Jones, Jess Glynne, Deacon Blue to name a few at racecourses in Newmarket, Epsom, Aintree, Cheltenham and tonight’s venue Sandown Park which is situated in the heart of Esher, Surrey.

After a relatively hassle-free car journey, we entered the venue during the penultimate horse race as the crowds of people and I went to check out the Busted merchandise tent which was filled with reasonably priced branded products. One really cool item was the Busted: OMFG! Pigs Can Fly Tour Tin which included a luggage strap, three coloured plectrums, Busted Sunglasses and a poster inside a collectible metal tin and it was priced at £20 which given the audience demographic seemed well thought out.

I must admit that for an open-air event we were very fortunate with the weather as although the sun was shining, it was complimented by a subtle breeze. Then at 8.55 pm (GMT) the stage was set for Busted’s live performance as the crowd screamed and shouted in excitement.

One reason why this show had such an electric buzz was because this was one of the reunion shows which featured all three original members including Charlie Simpson who had left the band in January 2005 to pursue other projects such as Fightstar and his solo work.

Opening with their first new track in twelve years ‘Coming Home’ I was intrigued and impressed with their new electronic sound as it showed how well these three guys gel both musically and personally. Also, it proved that all of the rumors earlier in the year were true; Busted were back!

Getting the crowd pumped, they followed on with their 2005 hit ‘Air Hostess’ which was instantly recognizable with Simpson’s electric guitar intro. The crowd danced and sang along loudly to this well-written and incredibly catchy pop song of the early noughties.

The band rocked out on ‘Falling For You’ with their fellow guitarist and drummer and it showed that not only can they write songs but they are also very talented musicians. One of the reasons why I liked Busted when I was younger was that they made sure that the live shows were full of energy and sing-a-long numbers and that is exactly what they did at Sandown Park.

The band continued to rattle out the fan favorites from the back catalogue such as ‘You Said No’ which dealt with rejection after asking someone to the school disco and they decline. Some people might remember those school discos in the assembly hall which saw everyone get a packet of crisps and a glass of squash whilst the DJ played those disco standards like The Village People’s ‘YMCA’.

Charlie Simpson’s  lead vocals are smooth on ‘Who’s David?’ which is clearly a live favourite this evening as Matt Willis keeps it groovy on his bass guitar. James Bourne shone on new track ‘One Of A Kind’ as he fluidly played an electronic keyboard guitar with a beaming smile and a cool pair of black sunglasses. Some people used this new song to refresh their drinks but I am personally very impressed with this mature electronic vibe and i am looking forward to the new album release in the autumn on East West Records.

A highlight of the entire performance was ‘Thunderbirds Are Go’ which was the underrated and sometimes overlooked Busted theme for the 2004 Thunderbirds film which featured real people as opposed to the classic Technicolor Gerry Adams puppets like the original. Interestingly, the song  proved more successful than the actual film and saw the band secure their fourth and final number one. Everyone in the audience knew the track and vocally gave it their all. A magical moment during a glorious sunset.

The edgy and slightly rockier ‘Crashed The Wedding’ helped the band in telling the world that they were more than (and better than) manufactured, auto-tuned pop which flooded the UK music charts at the time. On the subject of this song, if you get a chance watch the official music video below as it shows that Busted aren’t afraid to have a laugh:


Closing the hour and ten minute set with the upbeat ‘Year 3000’, everyone who went off for a drink earlier in the evening ran straight back to rock out on one last tune. ‘Year 3000’ was the first single I ever bought in a CD format at an Our Price store so I’d be lying if this moment didn’t warm my heart a bit.

Busted might not even of realized it at the time, but they played a huge part in people’s lives growing up (mine included) as their songs of relationships, school, crushes on teachers and pop culture were relate-able and connected with a younger audience.

In a world which has such darkness overshadowing it, seeing the newly reformed ORIGINAL Busted live in 2016 alongside the racing allows you to have a bit of escapism and you are then transported back in time to the early 2000s. An absolutely superb evening.

Glenn Sargeant


For more information on Jockey Club Live shows visit the official website: http://bit.ly/20XWwe1

(All photos are credited to Kieran White at KW Media. Many thanks to Warren Higgins at Chuff Media for supplying the photo pass and for his continued support)





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