Saturday, September 19, 2009

Happy Mondays & The Psychedelic Furs at Club Nokia

Amusement Parks on Fire started the night off in shoegaze style. Their whimsical vocals bring to mind Mew but the long, guitar driven songs are more MBV-lite. Indeed, they actually sound like Ride!

Happy Mondays sounded really good, although the occasion failed to match the Coachella appearance (complete with Anthony H. Wilson introduction) of 2007. However, Sean Ryder seemed really together and his singing was more confident than a couple of years ago, despite getting his lyrics from a laptop which confined him to center stage. With Ryder static and no Bez (passport problems) Julie E. Gordon took up the slack with an energetic performance and some great vocals. Highlights were the groovy 'Step On' and a feverish 'Reverend Black Grape' but all the old stuff was excellent. The songs from 'Uncle Dysfunktional' sounded ok but in truth only 'Jellybean' approaches vintage Mondays.

The Psychedelic Furs looked and sounded just like they did back in the 80's. Richard Butler has aged amazingly well and is still pencil thin. The problem (now and back then when I had 'Talk Talk Talk') is I can't listen to them for more than 30 minutes - it's all too raspy! With Butler's raspy vocals and heavily featured saxophone in every song it's all a bit samey after a while.... We made a dash for the exit, missing the inevitable pandemonium that I'm sure accompanied 'Pretty in Pink'. By the way, we heard that The Killers wouldn't let The Psychedelic Furs play 'Pretty in Pink' when the Furs supported them a couple of days ago. In fact it's worse than that - The Killers played it, with Richard Butler coming on to guest. Another reason to hate The Killers...

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