Saturday, January 31, 2009

HALF MAN HALF BISCUIT @ ACADEMY 1, 30 JANUARY 2009

Where did all these people come from?! Tonight's gig at Academy 1 was not sold out but if felt like it: not only was the 2000 capacity venue heaving, the atmosphere was that of a major happening where everybody inside was relieved to have a ticket and be part of something. And what a great atmosphere it was, more homecoming parade than wintry evening gig.

Half Man Half Biscuit have always instilled loyalty and affection and it was palpable tonight. Older and newer songs were greeted with recognition in equal measures; the playing was greeted with as much appreciation and warmth as the exceptional lyrics (make Nigel Blackwell Poet Laurate NOW); and even where the crowd got boisterous it was always accompanied by a genuine bonhomie. When you see a group of blokes all wearing Dukla Prague football shirts at the front what can you do but smile?
I expected the set to be mainly from the last two albums but it went right across their 23 year (count 'em) spanning back catalogue. This was actually the first time I had seen the band in over 20 years (Birkenhead 1985 since you ask). I'm not sure how or why that has happened but I'll make sure it won't be so long to the next one. Future HMHB dates here. I missed both support bands sadly but the 90 minute set (look at all those songs) from HMHB was great value in itself in every sense of the word.

The set list went something like this below but I think the running order goes awry at a few points and especially towards the end (the Guinness and Red Stripe combination not really helping). The encores included a cover of The Hollies 'The Air That I Breathe' "since we are in the fair city of Manchester". A 'credit crunch' version of Twenty Four Hour Garage People went down particularly well especially with Mrs A who was in attendance tonight despite being on medication and accompanied by a pain in the neck. And our friends from near and far.

Took Problem Chimp To Ideal Home Show
When The Evening Sun Goes Down
Turned Up Clocked On Laid Off
Bad Losers on Yahoo Chess
The Light At The End Of The Tunnel
Yipps (My Baby's Got The)
Petty Sessions
Restless Legs
Totnes Bickering Fair
We Built This Village On A Trad. Arr. Tune
Blue Badge Abuser
Gubba Look-Alikes
Them's The Vagaries
Look Dad No Tunes
Bob Wilson Anchor Man
Evening of Swing (Has Been Cancelled)
The Trumpton Riots
Everything's AOR
For What Is Chatteris
Twenty Four Hour Garage People
Joy Division Oven Gloves
Eno Collaboration
The Air That I Breathe
National Shite Day

TOOK PROBLEM CHIMP TO IDEAL HOME SHOW
Half Man Half Biscuit
CSI:Ambleside [BUY]

ENO COLLABORATION
Half Man Half Biscuit
Voyage To The Bottom Of The Road [BUY]

WE BUILT THIS VILLAGE ON A TRAD. ARR. TUNE
Half Man Half Biscuit
Achtung Bono [BUY]

Meanwhile our roving reporter Ms L was in Bury at the Met for The Travelling Band. No report forthcoming yet but some photographic evidence has been supplied. Including the set list. Makes me feel proud.







ONLY WAITING
The Travelling Band
Under The Pavement [BUY]

1 comment:

High Priestess of Punk-chew-ation said...

Oh, sweetie, you're not a pain in the neck. Honest.
That's not how I would spell Hawaiian.