LIVE

Super Furry Animals

Venue: Albert Hall, Manchester
Date: 6th May 2015

Following on from a three night residency in Cardiff’s Great Hall and one night in Glasgow’s O2 Academy, Super Furry Animals arrive in Manchester’s Albert Hall well rehearsed of a tour that sees the band together for the first time after a six-year hiatus, and fifteen years on from the release of their critically acclaimed Welsh language album Mwng.

At 20:45 on the dot, with daylight still edging its way in through the ceiling-high windows casting long shadows over the perimeter of balconies, the unmistakeable beat of ‘(A) Touch Sensitive’ pounds its way through a packed and expectant audience.

The band take to the stage, dressed in white decorating overalls, to a spine-tingling response and before you know it they've breezed their way through ‘(Drawing) Rings Around The World’, ‘Do Or Die’ and ‘Ice Hockey Hair’.

As the album art from Radiator flashes on the screen, two trumpeters join the fun from high up on the balconies to the left and right of the stage for rousing versions of ‘Demons’ and ‘Northern Lights’.

The groundbreaking, and now well into its pubescent teens, Mwng is represented mid-set with four tracks that include ‘Ymaelodi Â’r Ymylon’ and ‘Pan Ddaw’r Wawr’ before ‘Run! Christian, Run!’ slows everything down, beautifully exposing those in the crowd that can sing from those that can’t and perfectly demonstrating the diversity of the band.

By the time ‘Hello Sunshine’ has the room singing “I’m a minger, you’re a minger too, so come on minger, I want to ming with you” you start to realise that the best part of two hours have passed and there are still songs you’re looking out for.

The final half hour is as immediate as the first with ‘Hometown Unicorn’, ‘Juxtaposed’ and ‘Golden Retriever’ all met word for word. ‘Receptacle for the Respectable’ sees Gruff share a bag of crisps with the crowd and wear the spaceman helmet that requires singing from the eye/ear area before producing the prompt cards of ‘Applause’ and ‘Go Ape Shit’ that proved so popular from his American Interior tour, before exiting stage left.

The band reappear in, well the time it takes to get changed into their hairy Golden Retriever/Yeti costumes, and finish the night with the politically aware ‘The Man Don’t Give a Fuck’; the place erupts. On the eve of a general election it sounds as relevant as ever, and on this showing so are Super Furry Animals.

Steve C

Zervas and Pepper

The Globe, Cardiff
1st May 2015

Dim Sŵn 2015

Cardiff City Centre
11th April 2015

Gruff Rhys

Ebbw Vale Institute
7th February 2015

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