The summer of music events are steadily coming to a close in Halifax, with only one more gig after this evening to go but the crowds are showing no signs of waning. Tonight sees headline act Primal Scream being supported by the local band Working Men’s Club and Manchester-based LoneLady – each with a background in synth music so offering a perfect support for the chief act.
Once again there is a good crowd although perhaps not quite as big as some of the previous gigs I have attended here. Julie Ann Campbell AKA LoneLady begins the night with her own indelible style of post punk funk mixed with elements of electro pop and dance. There is minimal interaction with audience, but she lets the music do the talking. The second of the support acts is local Todmorden based band Working Men’s Club. Having gone through a change of line up since their inception in 2018 alongside a distinct change in sound, they are due to release their second album later this month. With a blend of electronica and post punk, frontman Syd Minsky-Sargeant throws some shapes in and amongst and similar to the previous act, offers limited exchanges with the crowd which is somewhat surprising given it is a local gig for them.
Finally, it’s time for the main act and Primal Scream take to the stage as part of their Screamadelica tour to mark the 30th anniversary of the iconic album. The genre-bending album, renowned for its psychedelic and acid house sounds mixed with dub, rock and even gospel catapulted Primal Scream into stardom in the early 90s. Lead singer Bobby Gillespie is resplendent in a custom bright red Screamadelica-logo suit, perfectly echoing the smattering of red running through the crowd in their own matching Screamadelica t-shirts – the merch stand has been extremely busy tonight.
The band open with ‘Movin’ On Up’ with pockets of the crowd breaking out into dance, joining in with the vocals and ‘Come Together’ is another favourite before the night moves into a more subdued number of tracks, ‘Damaged’, ‘I’m Comin Down’ and ‘Higher Than The Sun’, leaving the crowd absorbing the atmosphere and just savouring the moment. Bobby does attempt to engage with the crowd but the strong Glaswegian accent makes it somewhat difficult to hear the chat between songs, but given the fans are here to listen to the band sing, this ultimately doesn’t matter.
As the band return to the stage for the encore, the crowd erupts on the opening notes of ‘Loaded’ and Bobby introduces ‘Swastika Eyes’ with a few loaded political comments to resounding applause. The noise levels never dissipate as the band run through the remainder of the encore, perfectly bookmarking the gig by ending on ‘Rocks’. Ending with perhaps the clearest statement of the night, Bobby thanks the crowd and leaves stage with the words ‘Peace, love, rock n roll and fuck the Tories!’. An epic night in Halifax and one I’m sure the fans will remember for a long time!
Movin’ On Up
Slip Inside This House
Don’t Fight It, Feel It
I’m Comin’ Down
Higher Than The Sun
Shine Like Stars