To really appreciate how good a band is you have to
see them in 2 contrasting environments. So, one week on from the rough
& tumble triumph in Manchester, PiL arrived in the more sedate
surroundings of North Wales. The university venue is a high ceiling,
which has the vibe of a sports hall. It’s also run by people who care
about the acts they put on and the welfare of the punters. There’s no
heavy handed bully boy security that often blight the big city venues.
Only courteous staff - that makes a change.
relaxed atmosphere made for a joyous occasion, which was lapped up
with enthusiasm by the crowd and PiL themselves. Some of us had come
over the border celebrating England having won a World Cup match in the
afternoon. This led to an hilarious moment when John mentioned the
game, forgetting he was in Wales, causing much laughter. Both the
England and Wales fans enjoyed the moment. John quickly realised what
he'd done and remarked that we're all basically the same! It all added
positive, feel good nature of the evening.
Hearing the material
again one week after Manchester focused my attention on subtleties
I’d missed, such as the different arrangement of Death Disco. I’m Not
Satisfied was even more striking in intensity and is fast becoming a
PiL war cry. Likewise Cruel sounded better than ever - reviving this
has proved another high point in the set.
With all things PiL, the material is stretched hither & thither
making no two shows the same. Warrior, Memories, The Body all sounded
exciting, yet different tonight. The big hits were met with the
adoration they deserved with Rise and Public Image causing a crowd
The pairing of Flowers & Love Song works so well, they now seem
inseparable. Likewise, the finale of Open Up & Shoom is another
bone-shaking pairing that tears into your psyche.
Another top crowd, in an unusual, yet great off-beat venue. As PiL
departed, the perfect pop strains of The One continued to run around my
brain interrupted only by John’s biting delivery of The Room I Am In.
Two polar opposites - that’s what makes PiL so great.
The songs and venues may contrast but PiL remain consistently
Review & Photos by Phil
Manchester Ritz 16 June 2018 >
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