The Damned played a blinder last night at Manchester’s Albert Hall to showcase their brand new album ‘Darkadelica’. At another sold out show courtesy of one of Manchester’s finest venues, (they have played some blinders over the last few weeks!) the band took to the stage in front of a variety of fans, including some old school punks who have no doubt followed the band since they formed back in 1976.
They seemed very happy to be playing at Albert Hall, praising it’s classiness, whilst being relieved they were not playing at another venue down the road (which will remain nameless). The venue, fitted with baroque and gothic features suited this gothic punk five-piece perfectly. Mixed with plenty of action from the smoke machine, the band launched into their first track and a throw back to their 1985 release ‘Street of Dreams’ followed by thunderous applause as lead singer Dave Vanian sauntered onto the stage in a get up that could be described as a mixture of blues brothers crossed with phantom of the opera (it worked).
The combination of Vanian and Captain Sensible (dressed in his iconic stripes and beret) still work, and teamed with Paul Gray’s bass playing the sound is exceptional and creates a manic high-energy, theatrical set that is mesmerising and a joy to behold. The line-up also includes Monty Oxymoron and William Granville-Taylor on drums.
The band cautiously dropped new tracks in amongst older material. Hard core fans who have pre-ordered the album were in for a treat as we were privy to some of the new tracks from ‘Darkadelica’ which is due to be released next month. New tracks included ‘The Invisible Man’ which combines Vanian’s gnarly vocals and Captain Sensibles psychadelic, mind bending guitar playing.
Farian’s voice was exceptional, as was his audience interaction, waspish, witty yet still endearing. The fans were going wild, fawning over his every word and screaming his name when they were not screaming along with the lyrics. For any fans who are hesitant to see The Damned and their new material, don’t be! Vanian appears to be the peter pan of the punk scene, barely looking a day over 40 (ish) and Captain Sensible is still on good form, like a cheeky school boy who has been allowed to play out past his bedtime! The band continue their tour and all further dates and information about the release of ‘Darkadelica’ can be found here https://www.officialdamned.com/