Fun Lovin Criminals
Manchester Cathedral, Manchester, 26/2/2016
published: 10 /
Billy Seagrave at the Manchester Cathedral enjoys a memorable evening of nostalgia as bestselling York trio the Fun Lovin' Criminals celebrate the twentieth anniversary of their debut album, 'Come Find Yourself'
What a place to celebrate twenty years of an album, a packed out cathedral in the centre of Manchester!
Huey Morgan (guitar and vocals), Brian Lieser (keyboards, trumpet and vocals) and Frank Benbini (drums) carved a niche and a lifestyle that gave you a flavour of New York in the 1990s with their debut album, 'Come Find Yourself'.
The three guys from Brooklyn, New York brought to the stage a two set presentation, firstly in its entirety 'Come Find Yourself' and secondly a handful of other favourites. They came on stage to strobing lights and the theme to 'Superman' which was an immediate winner for me.
'Fun Lovin' Criminals' was the opener, instantly the band engaging with its audience and the audience with the band. The lost years of jazz funk and rock-infused hip hop laced with Huey's Brooklyn drawl carried the audience straight back to 1996, “How you doing, Manchester”? he asked as the crowd chanted, “Huey,Huey,Huey”.
The band were so comfortable and accomplished it felt like it was a home town gig, as they told great little antidotes and stories of how and where the tracks for the album derived. Now I am not sure if it was my imagination, or the incense that the cathedral use at their gatherings or the incense that was being wafted from behind the speakers, but something filled the air for the start of 'Scooby Snacks'. Was this all part of the nostalgia trip?
The first part of the show came to an end and the band retired off stage for a few minutes, only to return to the theme from the TV show 'The A Team', There was no let-up in the party atmosphere as they played 'Coney Island Girl' and 'Loco'. Neither had dated in the slightest. All too soon the last track of the night was introduced, 'Big Night Out' bringing down the curtain on an evening of nostalgia, a genre of music that still has a place today.
In a place that is usually for the worship of its saints, we came to have our souls cleansed by the Fun Lovin' Criminals.
Photos by Billy Seagrave