Wire live at the Fleece, Bristol, 10th February 2011
The US band Weekend kicked off the evening with a very loud droning set of guitar distortion and reverb vocals. From Oakland California they are billed as an indie/shoegaze band by their record label and their set was confidently delivered with controlled feedback and startling drumming.
A sound reminiscent of the Jesus and Mary Chain/Velvet Underground esq sound. Right up my street!
It was an incredibly loud set, never letting up, pretty much the perfect support for Wire. The crowd seemed to appreciate it. I’ll certainly look up their album “sport” on the Slumberland label.
After a short break we made our way to the front of the stage where Big Jeff was again taking up his essential spot at the front of the stage, towering over the surrounding crowd, we took our place just behind him.
The lights dimmed and Wire came on in a low key fashion before heading into the first song smash, off their new album.
The set was a fantastic mix between old and new material not pandering to the clammer for the old and familiar songs. The songs off the new album went down superbly with the crowd and really sounded sharp.
The new album “Red Barked Tree”, has had many excellent reviews in the music press and they soon played my favourite off the album “please take”.
When you consider that Wire have been around for over 30 years, and started out with an inventive post-punk/new wave sound, the edginess of their set did not reflect a softening with age.
Such an influential band sounded as tight as ever and soon got the crowd going within a song or two.
They were on for over an hour before they went off for the first encore. The time flew by which is always a good sign. We were treated to two encores, and the second beginning with a reply to the shouts from the crowd that “we don’t do requests” and “This is your new favourite song”! Wire never did compromise.
The set ended with a few minutes of feedback distortion before the power was cut due to a fire alarm being set off.
A good end to a great gig. Only my second gig of the year and I can already see this being one of my highlights.