Quo plug in and bring house down


The Chronicle - - What’s On -

THOSE pre­fer­ring a pre-show pint in the newly re­fur­bished bar at the City Hall may well have just missed one of those all too rare “I saw them as a sup­port band” mo­ments.

Cats In Space have been mak­ing quite a name for them­selves over the last cou­ple of years and with a grow­ing rep­u­ta­tion on the road with Deep Pur­ple and Thun­der, they have be­come some­thing of a musthave tour­ing part­ner.

It’s easy to see why, with their hugely in­fec­tious, melodic 70s style of pro­gres­sive hard rock that sees them pulling in in­flu­ences as di­verse as Queen, ELO and Sweet with a de­light­ful dose of the quirky Jel­ly­fish sprin­kled over for good mea­sure.

Lush multi-lay­ered har­monies shone brightly on Mad Hat­ter’s Tea Party and Great­est Story Never Told, while set closer Five Minute Celebrity nod­ded to­wards the raised de­fi­ant fist of KISS’s Flam­ing Youth.

This, in my opin­ion, was one of the finest sup­port shows seen at the City Hall in many a year with Cats In Space de­liv­er­ing a classy head­lin­ing show in all but name.

Any­one ex­pect­ing Quo sit­ting around strum­ming acous­tic gui­tars may have been caught un­awares as they stomped on stage to a very plugged-in and a most def­i­nitely elec­tric Caro­line, hav­ing de­cided on a change of plan from the orig­i­nal Aqu­os­tic shows to a full-blown rock show due to over­whelm­ing de­mand from their fans.

Quo were cer­tainly fired up for it right from the start as Some­thing ‘Bout You Baby I Like and the vin­tage Rain locked into gear. Maybe it’s the in­ti­mate at­mos­phere of the City Hall or maybe new guy Richie Mal­lone has in­te­grated more fully into the band since the sad loss of Quo leg­end Rick Parfitt – but what­ever it was, the whole feel of the show was far more up­beat than last year’s per­for­mance at the Metro Ra­dio Arena.

Bas­sist Rhino Ed­wards and long-time key­boardist/gui­tarist Andy Brown both stepped up to the mi­cro­phone to take lead on What­ever You Want and Creepin’ Up On You while Brown’s vo­cals on Parfitt’s sig­na­ture tune Don’t Drive My Car smoked with a raw bluesy edge. Fran­cis Rossi, of course, was the star of the show with his wry wit and cheeky ban­ter, trad­ing blows with the crowd and lov­ing ev­ery minute of it.

Rossi and new stage part­ner Malone gelled to­gether like they’d been on stage to­gether for years and Malone him­self must take great credit for the un­en­vi­able task of stepping into Parfitt’s large shoes.

Quo had the crowd up and rock­ing in the aisles with the promised mix of huge hits, old clas­sics and newer songs. Rain, Lit­tle Lady from 75’s On The Level and Softer Ride drew from the depths of their cat­a­logue while The Ori­en­tal and Creepin’ Up On You brought some mod­ern Quo to the pro­ceed­ings.

A smart med­ley threw Rail­road head­long into Down The Dust­pipe and Again And Again. It was the hits how­ever, that brought the big­gest cheers from the crowd and how can you ar­gue with the foot stomp­ing Down Down, What­ever You Want and the ever­green Rockin’ All Over The World that had a thou­sand heads bang­ing and air gui­tars strum­ming.

It was quite a sight and for one brief mo­ment peo­ple were 16 years old all over again and that in a nut­shell is the en­dur­ing power and pop­u­lar­ity of rock ‘n’ roll – pure, unashamed es­capism and Quo duly de­liv­ered.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.