Sunday 3rd July 2011.
The Manics rock The Roundhouse and my world like never before
I had seen the Manic Street Preachers perform about 2 months ago in Wolverhampton and I thought that was one of the best gigs I had ever been to, but as the sun was going down in Camden on Sunday night I was one of the lucky people in the competition queue who had won free tickets via iTunes, waiting for those doors to open seemed like forever and the magical night was just starting to unfold
9.30pm and the boys from Blackwood took the stage after a dramatic countdown with a back drop of their videos in a montage. Just before they appeared the girl next to me on the barrier said, I think Im going to cry all the way through this and it hit me then that I was right at the front, on the barrier seconds away from seeing my favourite band closer than ever before.
They exploded straight away opening with You Love Us, which instantly got the mosh pit in a complete frenzy, followed by Your Love Alone Is Not Enough & Motorcycle Emptiness which always delivers the goods live.
Front man and (underrated) guitarist James Dean Bradfields powerful vocal range filled the venue with anger, relief, passion and at times emotion, which was demonstrated when he performed The Everlasting acoustically. The crowd singing along was a touching moment, especially seeing the little smile he gave during the chorus. That was a great moment.
Nicky Wire was as outspoken as always and full of character and glitter. Complete with his trademark feather boa microphone stand and dead pan backing vocals he is the perfect compliment to James and drummer Sean Moore who I have to say for a little guy, god he can rock that drum kit.
The pace kept going with Faster, fan favourite Life Becoming a Landslide and their two number ones, If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next & The Masses Against The Classes. The crowd were also treated to Motown Junk which goes right back to their early days, which was the highlight for me. I have never seen a crowd move so much; thank god I had the barrier to hold on to!!
Another highlight was Autumn Song; James said that one of his favourite guitarists is Slash and was the inspiration behind the riff of that track.
In typical fashion the set list flew by and the ending was of course the epic A Design For Life, which was complete with confetti in Wales flag colours.
2 days later and I am still trying to take in the whole experience of the Manic Street Preachers. Yes, they might not to be of everyones taste but there is no denying the talent and raw power of these guys after all the pain and turmoil the band have gone through since bursting onto the scene in 1991. Compared to other artists and current trends they are a breath of fresh air, still pushing the musical envelope and most importantly, they have something intelligent to say. The first line in A Design For Life is Libraries gave us power. Well, the Manic Street Preachers give us (the fans) power and totally rock my world.