Last night Suede v2.0 reformed - without Bernard Butler, in other words. And how was it?
The NME has a scrappy review:
With Bernard Butler's replacement Richard Oakes on guitar, Neil Codling playing rhythm guitar as well as keyboards, Mat Osman on bass and Simon Gilbert on drums, singer Brett Anderson led the band through a hit-laden set, though at one point the rest of the band left the stage for him to play 'Stay Together' B-side 'The Living Dead' alone on acoustic guitar.
It's accurate, but... well, you don't come away thinking "it's like I was there."
There is a setlist, though:
'Killing Of A Flashboy'
'Can't Get Enough'
'Everything Will Flow'
'She's In Fashion'
'The Living Dead'
'The Asphalt World'
'The Wild Ones'
A lot of the blousy numbers, then. It's a pity they didn't check to see if Curve's old wind machine was available for the night.
Live4Ever detailed Brett's reaction at the end:
Frontman Brett Anderson (pic), who has reformed the band without former key member Bernard Butler, told the crowd at the end of the show: “All I have to say is I loved playing tonight. It’s been beautiful. Lets do it again in another seven years time.”
Let's hope he hadn't actually forgotten he was meant to be doing it about, ooh, now, tonight, in Manchester.
For a bit more depth, TheDavidX offers up a bit more colour:
They played it fairly safe songwise, opening with a triumvirate of crowd pleasers that I'd count among my least favourite Suede songs: She, Trash, Animal Nitrate. But I had to admit, they were stunningly powerful. By the coda of Animal Nitrate I had goose bumps down the back of my neck and left the swag stall in Andy's capable hands to join the heaving throng.
The only songs that might conceivably considered surprises were (and I'm doing this all from memory, I'm sure the set will be somewhere online if you want cold hard fact rather than my romantic recall) Pantomime Horse, Asphalt World (which seemed a bit shorter than usual, though I might have imagine that) plus a solo Living Dead. Otherwise it was all the hits you'd expect: Filmstar, Flashboy, Heroine, Everything Will Flow (sounding surprisingly good here, always an underrated number I reckon), Can't Get Enough, She's In Fashion, etc. The only real clunker was Obsessions which the band seemed to have forgotten how to play and Brett sounded like he'd given up singing it properly after the first verse.
And that's pretty much it. Nobody much blogging about the gig in the way there would have been dozens of reviews a couple of years back - now, it's all YouTubes and Twitters.
Talking of YouTube, then, here's some squint-and-listen-hard instant video. First up, She:
And The Living Dead:
Finally, the lovely people at TheQuietus have turned the set list into a Spotify playlist. You'll have to provide the cheering and bloke pawing at your arse for yourself.