Bristol 12 July 2004

Review by Pete Wyatt (Switch to

After ten years in the wilderness, the people of Britain (or Bristol, Wales and the West Country) were able tonight, to reclaim their part of Todd's World. The Liars gave a stupendous performance at the Bristol Academy to a happy and appreciative audience and everything is ok with the world, for a while.

Here is the set list which is accurate, I think.

Buffalo Grass
Facist Christ
I Hate My Frickin' ISP
While My Guitar Gently Weeps
God Said
Beloved Infidel (Todd solo)
Lunatic Fringe (Todd solo)
Green Onions (Band)
Soul Brother
Born to Synthesize
Feel It
Want of a Nail

Hello it's Me Just One Victory

Before the show, I met up with Spike (via this Board) for the first time and the Tour Bus arrived by co-incidence featuring the Band and Todd kindly signed autographs and posed for photographs. It's a great haircut he has, it really is.

Enjoyed drinks in the centuries old Hatchett Inn opposite and met like minded souls and then entered the Academy.

Which was basically a large club with a dance floor and a balcony if people wanted to get a more elevated view. But there was a wonderful, up close feel wherever one stood in front of the stage and this made for a warm, intimate atmosphere. A contrast to the larger , more prestigious venues that the Liars will appear at later this week

The band walked on stage at 8.15 (Burnt out cathedral indeed!) and I think most of us were mesmerised by the wonderful outfits and technology in front of us. They played a splendid TRUTH after which Todd dispensed with his orange outfit. Todd's singing was incredibly strong and passionate throughout the evening although he didn't chat much with the crowd until later into the second half.I enjoyed BUFFALO GRASS and ISP very much although I've always thought that FACIST CHRIST goes on a bit, as it did here. Todd worked the small stage like a true Lounge singer and I'm pleased to report, slipped on his guitar now and again and had a real good go! One of the highlights of the whole performance for me, was the playing of PAST which was incredibly gentle and moving but all the Liar songs were strong. FLAW and SWEET showed the band at their strongest and what a band they are.It obviously helps if the audience are familiar with the LIARS album but the show is so dynamic and well paced , it probably wouldn't seem to matter.

Todd played two songs solo, accompanying himself on guitar and then Jesse, Kasim,Prince and John returned to play a fabulous GREEN ONIONS with Jesse excelling himself on the Steve Cropper licks.

WMGGW was excellent too and a nice tribute to Beatle George.

Todd then got very chatty with the crowd, insisting that it was good that the crowd couldn't bring their children just prior to singing about motherfuckers and the like.His energy was fantastic, moving to all areas of the stage and singing his heart out. What a Diamond Geezer, to be sure. The audience featured lots of people like myself (men aged between 40 and 55) but there were also many younger people down the front like the group of teenaged girls and the couple who were cuddling each other throughout. I liked the way the show was split into two parts and was very impressed by the lounge club feel in the second half and the band's 1930's ice cream man outfits. Todd sported a wonderful gold Game Show Host type number and incredible platform shoes.

As we'd been so good, Todd insisted, he was going to treat us and they played SCIENCE with some great dance steps, followed by a ten minute plus version of BORN TO SYNTHESIZE . And then an excellent WANT OF A NAIL, with the band giving it loads of welly. Around this time Todd pretended to fall asleep and Kasim had to leave his cubicle and 'wake him up'.

They left the stage then and received a thunderous Bristol ovation (unusual at gigs here, trust me). Todd prefaced HELLO IT'S ME with a little story about being away for so long and wanted to re-introduce himself and it was smashing to hear in such an intimate setting and to be able to sing along especially with Spike. Same for the second encore JOV, which always inspires and get's me going. The Liars played for 2 hrs. 15 minutes and gave their all and there's no doubt the audience loved it and will hope they return. I realise this is also a very long review but as it's the first gig here for ten years, I felt it deserved more than a few lines.

Whilst waiting for my taxi outside, I chatted briefly with Kasim and his lady and he seemed thrilled with the show especially in a 'club atmosphere'. they then disappeared down a Bristol side street missing the 'fans' waiting outside the Tour Bus.

Thanks, Jesse, Kasim, Prince, John and Todd, it was smashing.

Pete Wyatt aka Howlin' Pete

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7/12/2004 - Bristol Carling Academy - Bristol, England

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