– CLUB ACADEMY, MANCHESTER –

An 80’s Matchbox B- Line Disaster gig is like cuing for a ride at a theme park. You wait ages and then you’re rewarded with a forty second or in this case, forty minute thrill. As is their want, 80MBD (sorry abbreviations necessary) like to wait for as long as possible before taking to the stage so that the crowd are like caged animals ready to be released! And when they are there is a cacophony of hairspray and tattoos in the most quickly assembled mosh pit, I have ever seen. Guy McKnight the lead singer begins singing ‘Psychosis Safari’ in his typical deep voice and executes the perfect crowd surf: it is a thing of beauty as the crowd are so willing to carry him they even help keep the microphone plugged in.

Back together after a four year hiatus 80MBD announce a tour, not a comeback tour as they have released no new material since 2010. This is simply a re- visit to past glories, sniffing around the carcass of their rock n roll feast. Touring without any new material is a good sign that they don’t take themselves too seriously. A pet hate of mine is a band that only play material from their new album and have little desire to please the crowd. The reason you are there is to please the crowd, these are the people that buy your music and come out in the rain to watch you play! So it is heartening that they have gone back on the road for the sheer thrill of playing live and not to promote a new album. Obviously money plays a part but I’ll pretend that’s not true.

The last time I saw 80MBD was in London ten years ago and even then their status as a live band was legendary and I still have the image of a sweaty, bare chested Guy McKnight imprinted on my memory. I have no idea why, of course and it seems there are other ladies of the Goth/ Rockabilly persuasion who are equally enamoured by him. There are sporadic shouts of ‘You’re fit!’ from the crowd and I get chatting to one girl who has just returned from Paris at the weekend to see them play and will be following them to Brighton and London to see out their tour in its entirety.

Another fan is Noel Fielding who designed a t- shirt that is languishing in the merchandise stall for a snip at £16. If someone was to say who are Noel Fielding’s favourite band I’d be hard pressed to find a better example, than 80MBD. They embody all the theatricality and hedonism of a proper rock band but also ever so slightly camp and daft. I could totally imagine Fielding at the back of the gig with his skin tight jeans on, swivelling his hips and revelling in the madness of it all.

They play tracks such as ‘Celebrate Your Mother’ which I enjoy just as much as I did first time around and ‘Psychosis Safari’ with the lyric ‘I drink all night and I sleep all day’ a classic Rock n Roll mantra repeated over and over in an appropriately menacing voice that is more than just a clique: I have it on good authority from someone who has had a drinking session with them that she had ‘the worst hangover of her life’ afterwards. The sheer amount of hedonism that went on may well explain the bands early demise and members coming and going but they have put their differences behind them to pull off another memorable performance and it is fitting that a band such as theirs have had such an intense, yet short lived career as that reflects the kind of music they make: short, sharp, effective and a whole lot of fun.

When people ask me what music I am in to, I find it very hard to give a definitive answer because, throughout my life I have been in to all kinds of different music from House to Heavy Metal depending on how old I was, what I was doing at the time and the kind of people I was hanging out with. So I can safely say I am open to most things as long as it’s good but obviously that is entirely subjective and open to interpretation, which I guess is what Silent Radio is all about. However, I would say that overall my alliances lie with Electronic Music because it covers so many genres and is constantly developing and changing. Having just returned from Sonar I felt a warm glow being surrounded by so many people who appreciate Electronic Music but there were times when I became a little jaded and questioned its integrity especially after seeing Katy B perform for the 3RD TIME! Will Katy B still be remembered in six years? I doubt it. But I guess that is the nature of Pop Music in particular; some stand the test of time, some don't. I think having grown up and lived in Manchester my musical tastes have been influenced by the club scene post- hacienda and the music at nights like Electric Chair which encompasses the sounds of House, Detroit Techno, Disco, Soul, Funk and Hip Hop. Basically anything with a groove, I like. But this is not confined to Dance Music I particularly like bands that are melodic and have a hook such as Wild Beasts, music that captures an emotion and has a heart. While at University I was also listening to music that didn’t really have much of a heart but more of a pacemaker in terms of the emotion it conveyed and that was Electro-Clash, a completely non- sensical and at times ridiculous genre that borrowed elements from House, Italio Disco and Techno and re- formed them in to one fun, but ridiculous package. While at University, I had my own radio Show where I tried to convey some of my musical tastes acquired from up north and had guest DJ's from a night in New Cross called Zombie Disco, with Jamie from Zombie Disco now working with Lindstrom. We also borrowed the services of Rina from Ladytron who had a guest DJ slot. Anyhow, I think it is safe to say I like a wide range of music apart from Katy B, sorry Katy.