The second night of iTunes Live is one for the serious muso fan. You know Glasvegas mean business when you see James Allen and his gang in black take to the stage. Latest single 'Geraldine' is fantastic live, with a wall of sound built from fuzzy guitars, howling feedback and pounding drums. On epic set-closer 'Daddy’s Gone', a young boy’s lament for his absent father, they sound beautifully heartbreaking.
Paul Weller‘s fourth solo album, 'Heavy Soul', wasn’t just a title, but a mantra to work by - his songs are full of chunky retro guitars and dense, swirling keyboards, with influences from old school musicians like the Small Faces and Curtis Mayfield. Tonight, new songs from '22 Dreams' sit alongside classics spanning his whole career.
The man himself bowls on, in a good mood for once, and the first thing you notice is that brilliant, bizarre 3-in-1 variation on the Mod haircut. Weller and his band launch into crowd-pleasers like 'Peacock Suit', 'From The Floorboards Up' and 'The Changingman', which are given a fiery, renewed revamp live.
Not one to play safe, he serves up a dubby, effects-filled take on acoustic classic “Wild Wood” and a jazzy stroll through “Broken Stones”. New tracks like the psychedelic “Picking Up Sticks” and delicate ballad “Invisible” show that at nearly 50, he’s still got it.
The main set closes with an electric version of The Jam’s 'Eton Rifles', which Weller spits out with as much anger as he did 30 years ago. The one false step is ending the encore with The Beatles’ 'All You Need Is Love' – everyone’s singing along, but it seems like a lazy way to finish after the energy of the rest of the set. Still, it’s clear there’s still plenty of life in this old Mod yet.