“The good news…” announced Captain Sensible, as the Damned took to the stage for their second night at London’s Alexandra Palace, “…is we’re still alive. The bad news is it’s quite loud and some of you might lose your hearing. But who fucking cares! It’s rock ’n’ roll!”. Cue keyboardist Monty Oxymoron kicking off opener ‘Street of Dreams’. Dave Vanian entered stage left, dressed top to toe in black, complete with gloves, a fedora and an umbrella. And we were off.
The Damned were fired up and full of energy. The Captain wielding his Gibson SG like a man possessed, Old pro bassist Paul Gray and drummer Will Taylor locking in the groove. There was no messing about with audience banter as the first few tunes came in rapid succession. New song ‘The Invisible Man’, from this year’s Darkadelic was next, proving that they still have it in spades, and then we were back to The Black Album with ‘Wait For the Blackout’.
There’s something reassuring about seeing the Damned at this stage of their career. They seem to be having an absolute ball and the audience inside the stunning theatre at Alexandra Palace were loving it. Vanian ditched the fedora and shades in favour of a clown hat and red nose for ‘Beware of the Clown’, which could have been referencing any one of the leaders we have had during the past 13 years, but the video that accompanies this song from Darkadelic will leave you in no doubt – one to check out! Not to be outdone, Sensible’s guitar tech, Seano, appeared on stage to place a red nose on the Captain mid way through this belter of a tune.
The tunes kept on coming, and before we knew it we were on song 18 and the end of the main set – a blast through ‘Neat Neat Neat’ (incorporating parts of LA Woman by The Doors & Folsom Prison Blues by Johnny Cash) from 1977’s Damned Damned Damned. We were then treated to two encores, which included their 1986 Top 3 hit ‘Eloise’, and finished with Punk’s first single ‘New Rose’. The Damned seem to get better with age, and we can’t wait until they’re next on tour!
The Damned Rock Alexandra Palace: A Night of High Energy Punk and Fun – Gig Review @ RockNews