Taking to London in support of their acclaimed 13th album ‘Resistance Is Futile‘, the band played a hit-packed and career-spanning set that showcased new material as well as a surprising five cuts from debut album ‘Generation Terrorists’.
After early peaks came with the blistering opener of ‘International Blue’, a rousing ‘Motorcycle Emptiness’ and majestic ‘No Surface All Feeling’, recent single ‘Distant Colours was warmly received before the leopard-print clad The Anchoress joined the band three stellar duets with ‘Your Love Alone Is Not Enough’, ‘Little Baby Nothing’ and new track ‘Dylan & Caitlin’.
Other highlights came with an outing of rarity ‘4 Ever Delayed’ and a brutal rendition of ‘Masses Against The Classes’, before frontman James Dean Bradfield performed three tracks solo and acoustic with a break-neck but stripped back take on ‘Faster’ from ‘The Holy Bible’, a cover of ‘Can’t Take My Eyes Off You’ and early favourite ‘Stay Beautiful’.
Returning to the stage, bassist Nicky Wire had gone for a costume change – opting to wear a skirt and telling the crowd: “I have the best legs in rock n’ roll so I might as well use them”. Wire would later steal the show by taking lead vocals of cover of ‘No Feelings’ by “London’s greatest band” Sex Pistols.
Reviewing the show, NME wrote: “Neither wallowing in nostalgia nor leaning on self-parody, the Manics’ new material shimmers among the bewildering calibre of their legacy. With overwhelming waves of mutual love and driven by bravado and compulsion, this was a stately performance from a band who still somehow play like they have so much to prove. Tonight will rank as one of their finest hours.”
Manic Street Preachers’ setlist was:
No Surface All Feeling
Your Love Alone Is Not Enough (with The Anchoress)
Little Baby Nothing (with The Anchoress)
Dylan & Caitlin (with The Anchoress)
You Stole the Sun From My Heart
4 Ever Delayed
The Masses Against the Classes
Horses Under Starlight
Everything Must Go
If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next
Faster (James Dean Bradfield solo acoustic)
Can’t Take My Eyes Off You (Frankie Valli cover)
Stay Beautiful (James Dean Bradfield solo acoustic)
You Love Us
Walk Me to the Bridge
Hold Me Like a Heaven
No Feelings (Sex Pistols cover – Nicky Wire on vocals)
People Give In
Slash ‘n’ Burn
A Design for Life
The band’s tour concludes tonight in Cardiff.
Meanwhile, the Manics have been confirmed as guests on the upcoming new series of ‘Later… With Jools Holland‘.
Wire also spoke to NME to reveal details of his upcoming debut art exhibition, as well as a play he’s writing with his brother and poet, Patrick Jones,