Maniacal Road Sweepers
Busy week or so due to a number of deadlines that have been around (including elks, sorry ELQs that I'll get around to writing about v.soon).
Anyway, Saturday night saw Vic and I making our way to the NIA to see the Manic Street Preachers. I've not seen them before, and I've not been to a gig in the NIA, so was intrigued by what the show would be like, and what the NIA was like as a venue.
My first impression was that the shape of the venue is v.odd, ie wide and narrow, rather than square or long and thin. It did mean that we could comfortably stand near the back and still feel close to the action.
The sound in the NIA was fairly ropey, I had earplugs in, but that seemed to help cut out the awful rumbling and high pitched noise. It was really obvious during the acoustic part of the manics set, when the only sound should have been Bradfield's singing and the guitar. Oh no. There was lots of hiss and noise as well.
As to the performance: Bradfield was suffering from a cold or flu, so it was a surprise that he made it through the ~100 minutes of performance. He also had a few issues with some of the higher notes, but we helped out, some less tunelessly than others. He was deeply apologetic and also greatful for the reception.
Having not seen the band before, I was unaware that they had a great banter with the audience between songs with little in-jokes, and quirky introductions to songs. But better that than a monosyballic lead singer.
The other shock of the evening was discovering that 3 other Birmingham councillors were claiming to have a life as well (hello John, Penny and Zoe!). I thought the Manics might have been a bit too left wing for Labour cllrs.