The Courteeners at the 100 Club
Led by a bouncer through the baying crowd and making their way to the stage like heavyweight boxers at a championship event – whether purposeful or not – The Courteeners know how to make an entrance. This gritty, intimate but steeped-in-history central London venue was packed to the rafters for The Courteeners return, which was only announced a few days prior. The 100 Club gig was their first show in seven months and tickets sold out in just minutes. The long established fan base of this Middleton-based Polydor-signed four-piece are evidentially thirsty for new material.
This return to the live scene comes sooner than expected, but The Courteeners return with vigour to release their fourth album Concrete Love via PIAS on the 18th of August, in addition to headline slots on The NME/BBC Radio One stage at the Reading and Leeds Festival in August. With frontman Liam declaring “welcome to the inferno!” as they arrived on stage, The Courteeners ran through an hour-long set containing crowd pleasers, old favourites and the debut of five new songs, pleasing the mixed bag of support and fanatics in attendance. Kicking off with Small Bones, followed by Cavorting and Lose Control, the band endearingly admitted nerves and the potential to be rusty, though this polished outfit showed a return to form worthy of the 100 Club’s rock and roll history, having hosted The Clash and The Sex Pistols in previous years.
It’s easy to see why The Courteeners have been declared as the voice of the north, lauded by Morrissey, they’re the embodiment of England’s misspent youth, the indie music version of a Shane Meadows film. Tonight the band demonstrated a glimpse into what could be a more mature offering with new songs Has He Told You that He Loves You Yet, and Next Time You Call.
The Courteeners still succeed in delivering anthemic festival singalongs – the reaction to the fantastic Not Nineteen Forever and What Took You So Long? is still impressive – though constantly supplying lad-rock by numbers begs a question: will they stand the test of time and be able to differentiate themselves from their contemporaries? Perhaps we can look forward to Concrete Love for the answer.
Photos: Filippo L’Astorina
For further information and future events visit The Courteeners’ website here.
Listen to new single Summer here: