Coming on stage in total darkness and then putting the lights up over Brett Anderson, frontman of 90´s indie Suede, worked the audience at the Great Hall in Cardiff University Student´s Union into a fervour.
The band was formed in 1989 in London and they underwent various changes in their formation and a brief split with Brett Anderson's alternative band The Tears. Currently, the band reunited the frontman Brett Anderson, Richard Oakes (guitars), Matt Osman (bass player), Simon Gilbert (drummers) and Neil Codling (keyboards and vocals). And they´re back on the road for a short sell out British tour to support the release and presentation of their eighth album The Blue Hour.
Tonight´s opening track As One, is heavy with braoding menace and quasi-pagan lyrical symbolism. Followed by one of its legendary b-side´s My Insatiable One, the epic sweep of Outsiders the transgressive We Are The Pigs, a glam-rock anthem, So Young, Metal Mickey, New Generation, the atmospheric Tides or She´s Not Dead. The singer pouts, swinging his mic lead like Chaplin´s cane, leaping from monitors with supple grace.
Stay Together was another song slowed down and performed acoustically, this time accompanied by ace guitarist Richard Oakes. By the time Suede reached The Drowners, one of my favourite songs, the momentum felt unstoppable; then followed Starts And Ends and Indian Strings. As the night goes on, the wild-eye Anderson, gets even more intense and feral. It looked as though this was going to be a good, solid performance with Brett´s voice sounding powerful.
The snarls that curdled Trash, as if it was on the verge of ecstatic spontaneous combustion, had the whole crowd roaring and then, the lewd venal Animal Nitrate, Suede´s 1993 top 10 hit about the selfish thrill of using poppers during sex; another personal favourite, and the song Introducing the band.
An acoustic solo by Brett of new song Another No One was followed straight after by Beyond The Outskirts, Invisibles and Flytippings. After a lot of stamping and cheering, they returned for the encore with Beautiful Ones which generated one of the biggest pints-in-the-air audience sings along of the night. Then the closing new track, life Is Golden, apparently written for his young son, radiates a qualty Suede have never embraced : success, unfettered positivity. It´s a tremendous end to a frequently staggering night. Suede strutted and minced through a set that took in the hightlights of their latest albums.
For more than an hour and a half, the band entertained, spending the majority of the time walking along monitors along the edge of the stage. Their gigs have always been a primal celebration. Brett Anderson is a remarkable fromtman who had the fans eating out of his hand all night.
Review and pix by Maria Joe Hernandez