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Keane winning over new generations in sunset Forest Live concert

Keane's long-anticipated sold-out gig deferred due to the pandemic finally took place on Saturday in the intimate forest setting of Cannock Chase as part of the Forest England Forest Live music series.

Keane at Forest Live. Photo: Dave Cox
Keane at Forest Live. Photo: Dave Cox

Cannock Chase's first concert was in 2006 with this location ideally placed in a naturally formed bowl in the middle of the forest, which acts like an amphitheatre.

London-based Indie rock support act Flyte did a good job warming the audience up as the sun went down, with new numbers from their recently released album This is Really Going to Hurt. The band formed at school and have taken their name from the Evelyn Waugh character Sebastian Flyte from Brideshead Revisited.

Keane at Forest Live. Photo: Dave Cox

While they entertained us with their new work lead vocalist/guitarist Will Taylor linked the songs with his cheery banter and background information on the group.

At last the main event appeared in a cloud of dry ice and Keane, who last played Cannock Chase in 2010, were met by an enthusiastic audience who were eager to hear not only their new work but the well-known classics from albums such as Hopes and Fears and Under the Iron Sea.

Keane at Forest Live. Photo: Dave Cox

They were not disappointed and the group that formed in 1995 and returned from a five-year break in 2019 had the audience on their feet from the start singing along to their new playlist in addition to the old favourites.

Having opened with Disconnected Keane played for a full two hours, they are one of those groups that everyone loves with their easy going soft rock style and as the sun set against the forest backdrop we were treated to lead singer Tom Chaplin's distinctive voice drifting through the early evening.

Keane at Forest Live. Photo: Dave Cox

The playlist was varied with many of their well known hits, including Everybody’s Changing, She Has No Time and Somewhere Only We Know with three numbers in the encore, the finale being Sovereign Light Cafe.

Whilst the audience primarily consisted of those that had grown up loving this group, this was very much a family event with original fans bringing along the next generation who were visibly appreciative of the group's talents.

Keane at Forest Live. Photo: Dave Cox

It is obvious to see why these events sell out quickly and as annually Forest England plants eight million trees sustainably using proceeds from ticket sales why not "Stop For a Minute" - pardon the pun - and do your bit for the environment whilst supporting future events and sign up for further information about Forest Live gigs at

Review by Sarah Derry, photography by Dave Cox

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