Super Furry Animals – The Limelight 1, Belfast, 30/11/2016
There is no support act tonight, so a little after 9.15pm Super Furry Animals take to the stage completely dressed in crystal meth suits. They cook up their two fabulous first albums before a rapturous audience. The band walk onto the stage with signs stating “Fuzzy Logic”, “Side One”. “Thanks for letting us play this album,” says lead singer Gruff Rhys introducing the first.
The group are tight and the sound is fantastic throughout the set. There are not many bands that can transport an audience nostalgically through not one but two albums in one gig. The backing vocals are superb and add to the psychedelic, techno-rock created.
“This song’s called…” states Gruff as he launches into ‘If You Don’t Want Me To Destroy You’. Tonight there are a couple of first airing of tracks live. The band have never played ‘Long Gone’ before (except for an acoustic session). The band hold up a sign saying “prolonged applause” after ‘Hanging With Howard Marks’ – as a tribute to the band’s late friend. The writer, performer and former drug smuggler famously appeared on their album cover Fuzzy Logic.
There is no break as a sign is transported across the stage informing us it’s time for the Radiator album to be aired. This is the band’s masterpiece. Fuzzy Logic is good but tracks like ‘Demons’, ‘Play It Cool’ and ‘Mountain People’ elevate The Furries above others. The notes Gruff gets from his acoustic guitar at times are phenomena;l playing it just like an electric. A trumpet player continually adds to the sound. Neon and strobe lights are in use along with a smoke machine making the band look highly appealing visually.
‘The International Language of Screaming’ gets everyone singing the “la las” and “hoo hoo’s.” The band are fun, and for someone who wishes they knew their stuff better than they do, entertain no end. It’s also the first ever airing live of ‘Bass Tuned To D.E.A.D’ which they initially mess up and have to start again. They finish Radiator on a high though before leaving the stage for a few minutes break.
As the band come back on stage we notice that they have changed into Golden Retriever outfits and they finish us off with the ever amazing ‘The Man Don’t Give A Fuck’ – a song that has been in this reviewer’s head since last seeing the band in 1999. They leave us at 11.15pm. Big up to the venue for the air conditioning introduced towards the end of the gig.
It would have been nice to have heard ‘Do or Die’, ‘Golden Retriever’ and ‘Rings Around The World’ but Super Furry Animals are still playing incredible live shows for all to see. These albums are just full of catchy tunes. My gig-going partner says it’s one of the best concerts he’s ever been to. I say 8 out of ten.
The Fuzzy Logic/ Radiator tour continues throughout the UK. It’s highly advisable you see it.
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