By Desh Kapur, Rock At Night Manchester
Venue: Venue Cymru, Wales–May 1, 2018
Due to the Venue Cymru web-site saying doors were at 8pm, I arrived at the venue, collected my passes only to discover, The Coral were already ¾ of the way through their set and the doors were actually open at 7pm. Nevertheless, what I managed to catch, was tight and sounded as only as The Coral can and do, lilting indie pop tunes with the sweetest melodies and perfect harmonies. In truth, I am a big fan and songs like “Dreaming Of You”, “Pass It On”, “In The Morning” and “Who’s Gonna Find Me” have a special place in my musical heart.
Then the stage went black and the sold-out Venue Cymru crowds noise levels started to rise in anticipation, the screen at the back of the stage started playing a procession of Japanese Samurai inspired images, then the Welsh indie punk rockers walked on and the crowd of middle aged rock and rollers erupted in mass applause.
As the first chords were struck and the screen at the back of the stage flashed quotes from the likes of French philosopher Albert Camus, the band launched into “International Blue” off their new album “Resistance Is Futile”. Then it was into the classic “Motorcycle Emptiness” from their 1992 debut album “Generation Terrorists”. Two songs written 26 years apart, the Manics have stood the test of time and tonight they played songs old and new, side by side. The classics were all there, “A Design For Life”, “If You Tolerate This”, “You Stole The Sun From My Heart” “The Masses Against The Classes”, “Your Love Alone Is Not Enough”.
In truth The Manics are a very different band from the one that started out over 22 years ago. The punkiness has gone, the songs are straighter, but the knack for writing great songs with big choruses has never changed. Mixed in with songs of love and heartbreak, The Manics have always had something to say with intellect and perception.
But tonight for me was about celebration. Not just about celebrating an iconic Welsh band but about celebrating an iconic British band, 22 years and 13 albums don’t lie.
DIOLCH YN FAWER IAWN
THE MANICS – YOU STOLE THE SUN FROM MY HEART
THE MANICS – DESIGN FOR LIFE
THE MANICS – MOTORCYCLE EMPTYNESS