Gig review: Manic Street Preachers, Glasgow
Manic Street Preachers - Glasgow Barrowland
* * * *
New album Rewind The Film breaks fresh ground for the band more than twenty years into their career, but this set began with one of their biggest crowd-pleasers, Motorcycle Emptiness, before coasting along agreeably for a time with frontman James Dean Bradfield attacking the catchy melodic hooklines like a rottweiler.
Dapper beanpole bassist Nicky Wire, a self-styled “f***-up of fashion and mess” is no one’s idea of a good singer, least of all his own, but As Holy As The Soil, his plea to the band’s missing-presumed-dead guitarist Richey Edwards (“I love you so, won’t you please come home”), was affecting in its sincerity and vulnerability.
The title track of the new album was a subtly epic and dynamic addition to their set, but a slowburn compared to the instant hit of the following You Love Us, while the poetically politicised 30 Year War slotted with distinction into a powerful closing salvo including the ever potent Kevin Carter, primitive debut single Motown Junk – preceded by a burst of The Skids’ Into The Valley to complement an earlier cover of Big Country’s Chance – and the uplifting crescendo of A Design For Life.