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On the way in to the venue the "security" guy asked me if I had any chewing gum in my pocket. I thought I must have mis-heard him, and he looked VERY displeased when he had to MUMBLE his question REPEATEDLY until I was sure that IS what he'd asked. I must have looked like a Comedy Deaf Uncle saying "Eh? CHEWING gum young man?". The Nice Door Man said it's because they have trouble with it sticking to the carpets. Ah!
Apart from that kerfuffle The Brixton Academy proved itself once again to be very much the NICEST of London's Medium Sized Venues [i.e. the ones that are like old theatres]. This isn't exactly hard, as most of the rest of them are utter utter shitholes designed to DRAIN the HUMANITY of all within through a constant drip drip drip of RIP-OFFS, but it's genuinely Fairly Pleasant. There's plenty of loos that are easy to get to, plenty of bar staff, and you can actually SEE from most parts of the venue.
We were upstairs this time and so were able to RELAX with our beers while the fairly ROTTEN support band were on. I'm told by RELIABLE SOURCES that they are a band formed at a STAGE SCHOOL and GOLLY but you could tell - dour, pointless but inexplicably excitable songs based on a single riff with repeated HISTRIONIC SCREECHING over the top played by three DULL yet PROFESSONAL AND COMPETENT Musicians Who Like The 'M' Capitalised, fronted by Singing Girl who had very very clearly done several MODULES in stage craft. There were heads held back, I'm Krazy Me SKIPS across the stage and - HOORAH - the Old Classic, Pretending To Be Sexy With The Guitarist. Whoo!
They were followed by a Variety Of Short Films Of The Very Obvious Morrissey Variety - Johnny Ray (i think it was Johnny Ray anyway), some Music Hall, and of course The New York Dolls. I think Stephen Patrick and I will have to disagree ont matter of The New York Dolls.
And then the lights dimmed and CHRISSIE HYNDE came on and introduced him! GOLLY! There was a couple of minutes of AMBIENT SOUNDS and the man himself came onstage for a MIGHTY version of "This Charming Man"!!! It was AMAAAAAAZING! He was in fine fettle from the start, his singing was FANTASTIC and the band sounded LOUD, also CHUNKY. I know people complain that they lose some of the DELICACY and FINESSE of The Smiths, and while that's true they are not ACTUALLY The Smiths and sound GRATE when playing live.
There then followed 40 minutes of HIT after HIT after HIT, it was amazing - "Throwing My Arms Around Paris", "Ask", "Something Is Squeezing My Skull", "SOME GIRLS ARE BIGGER THAN OTHERS!!!", "Irish Blood English Heart", "How Soon Is Now" and many MANY more. BRILLIANT! There was a bit of a LULL just after that, only because he did some songs I was less familiar with, and also because he did his Rant About The Media. "How many Music Magazines have come to review us? NONE." he said. Well, Morrissey, maybe they'd booked their tickets for when these shows were SUPPOSED to happen, and couldn't make it to the rescheduled dates? It seemed a bit odd that he was so bothered about it - and it'd been in LOADS of the papers, ALL saying how GRATE he was.
And GRATE he very VERY much was - Indeed, ROCKING - and when he came out for the encore of "The Last Of The Gang To Die" (it's BRILLIANT that The Big HIT he saved to last is so recent) the entire BALCONY was up and DANCING. OK, dancing in a very much INDIE DAD sort of way, but still. He was FAB!
posted 23/7/2009 by MJ Hibbett
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