With Support From Losers.
Rock City Nottingham 10th November 2013.
Tonight, Rock City was to play host to one of the worlds most prominent and well respected musicians! His career has spanned some 35 years and in one way or another his music has influenced our lives. Other musicians such as Nine Inch Nails, Marilyn Manson and Dave Grohl all acknowledge Gary Numan as an influence in their own musical journeys and have covered his tracks on their own albums (except Manson). Even artists, such as Basement Jaxx, have had great commercial success thanks to the use of a Gary Numan sample, (M.E.) on the track “Where’s your head at?” So, no time to delay then, this is a gig I’ve been looking forward too for a while, time to head over to Nottingham. Here in my car……
I’ll continue with that later, but first, supporting Numan were Losers, odd name, to which the crowd had great pleasure in shouting between tracks, whilst forming an L shape, using their index finger and thumb, pressed up against their foreheads, you remember doing it, don’t deny it, but this band are far from their names sake and are a very talented bunch indeed!
The band consists of a wide variety of musicians, all having varying success in previous projects, Tom Bellamy (ex Cooper Temple Clause) – Guitar & Vocals (Panzer Attack, by The Cooper Temple Clause is one of my all time favorite tracks, even to this day), Paul Mullen (ex YourCodeNameIs:Milo/Young Legionnaire) – Guitar, Keys and Vocals, Mark Heron (ex Oceansize/Kong) – Drums and Percussion, Eddy TM (DJ/new music radio and club guru) – Bass, Keys and Backing Vocals, as well as a young lady of the keyboards and an electric ukulele, who’s name I cannot find.
The band formed back in 2009 and in 2010 their debut album “Beautiful Losers” grabbed the dance music media’s attention instantly, catapulting them into the musical spotlight.
After hearing the first album, I considered how their live show would work, being primarily electronic music and vocals, but the likes of Pendulum, Chase n Status and others have successfully produced captivating live shows, whilst maintaining their sound, so why not these Losers. I think it’s safe to say I was intrigued. The music they produce is deep, meaningful and thought provoking in their live show, whilst maintaining that electro feel, they have managed to accompany it with enhanced bass from the drums and bass guitar, leaving the 2 guitarists to produce some heavy riffs, drops and solo’s that translates well live.
I personally like dance and electronic music, but after tonight’s show, I couldn’t tell these guys were a dance act. The new album “And So We Shall Never Part” was made possible through the fan funded website Pledge and is being released as we speak. This new album is said to be heavier, leaning more towards their live show and less like the previous album. Tonight people at the gig could pick up a copy of that album, exclusively, as it is not yet available anywhere else, so if you do go to any of the shows on the Splinter Tour, make sure you pick up a copy, it will be well worth it.
Losers bass player, Eddy, dedicated the last track in their set “Azan” to Gary Numan tonight, stating this track had inspired Numan to write his latest album SPLINTER, he also went on to say, if he walked out into Nottingham and got hit by a bus, he could die happy knowing this fact……I hope this didn’t happen, they are performing in Sheffield tonight and will continue on with Numan throughout this tour, so check what all the hype is about for yourself!!
Set list tonight consisted of: 1. Acro 2. Us Vs Night 3. Think You 4. The Chain 5. Turn Around 6. Azan (Set list taken from the stage list so may not be as per the actual track title)
Gary’s introduction was interesting as at the back of the stage, metal panels started to spell out the word “Splinter”, and once spelt, out rushed the band to a barrage of screams and applause, which only got louder once everyone recognised Gary. If one things for certain, despite his age, Gary Numan has taken good care of himself and is as energetic as ever. Trying to photograph him was a nightmare, factor in masses of smoke and back lighting, I struggled to say the least. My very first shot, however, was of Gary with his Gibson Les Paul, bought by his father, when he was only fifteen and is probably the inspiration that got Gary into music…..Thank you Gary’s Dad! Not that you could tell from my photos, but there was actually a full band along side Gary tonight, but knowing how important Gary is to the music scene and only having 3 tracks to shoot him, I didn’t get many of the others, sorry!
Another certainty is that a Gary Numan show is always going to be entertaining and tonight was no exception. This album has gone right back to his heavy synthesizer days, yet it sounds fresh and up to date. With plenty of emotion, feeling and energy from Gary, the rest of the band and the crowd, I couldn’t help but feel inspired myself!
As cries of NUMAN, NUMAN, NUMAN and wolf whistles came from the crowd, I could tell they were thoroughly enjoying themselves and the show, so much so that during the track “Films”, I think everyone in the crowd were waving their arms about, side to side and in unison – clearly the crowd are well versed!
It’s fair to say, the show featured a lot of tracks from the new album “Splinter” and with this being the Splinter tour, that would make sense, however, I along with many of Gary’s fans and the music press will agree, this is his best body of work for a long time. From start to finish, the show was spectacular, but my favorite moment has to be hearing “Cars” live, it bought back so many memories from my youth, where I heard the track for the first (and many after that) time, when my dad played it at home, it almost bought a tear to my eye!
Full set list consisted of: 1. Resurrection 2. I Am Dust 3. Metal 4. Everything Comes Down to This 5. Films 6. Here in the Black 7. The Fall 8. The Calling 9. Down in the Park 10. Pure 11. Splinter 12. Lost 13. When the Sky Bleeds, He Will Come 14. We’re the Unforgiven 15. Love Hurt Bleed 16. A Prayer for the Unborn 17. Cars 18. Are ‘Friends’ Electric? 19. My Last Day
Words and Photography by Jay Hawkins (JJ Photography UK)