The Duckworth Lewis Method
Manchester Academy 3
added: 27 Sep 2013
// gig date: 26 Sep 2013
reviewer: Paul Holmes
On record, The Duckworth Lewis Method
quietly snuck out one of the finest albums you’ll hear this year a few months back, with their second long-player Sticky Wickets
Fusing musical homages to ELO, 10cc, The Beach Boys and Art Of Noise with lyrical content mostly inspired by that beautiful game, cricket, it’s a treasure trove of expertly honed power-pop art-rock, which is perhaps to be expected from Neil Hannon
of The Divine Comedy
and Thomas Walsh
Detractors could say that the cricket aesthetic is gimmicky, and as the band take to the stage in typically old fashioned attire, and the assembled crowd – sadly downgraded to Academy 3 instead of the advertised Academy 2 - contains a handful of cricket-whites in the audience, it’d hard to argue that the band have anything but love for the game, and their endeavour.
That warm feeling extends to the whole evening, as the band have clearly decided to make the most of the transition to a more intimate space and give those who manage to fill it a darn good time.
Leading the way is Walsh, taking centre stage with that incredibly smooth voice, acoustic guitar slung over his shoulders, and a twinkle in his eye that leads him to have the crowd in stitches between tracks, mostly with comments we couldn’t possibly repeat here.
Settled at his keyboard for most of the evening, bar a few guitar crunching interludes, Hannon gives almost as good as he gets, riffing off Walsh’s comments and interacting with the audience.
The night also acts as a chance to get to know the unsung hero of TDLM a little better – Walsh’s Pugwash bandmate, guitarist Tosh Flood
. Playing guitar whilst wearing a cricket glove all night long, Flood gets his own share of madcap comedy into the increasingly irrelevant ad-libbing, even prompting a quick rendition of the James Bond Theme!
Glorious, note perfect tunes are the order of the day – except for when Hannon forgets how to count briefly – and the frivolity on stage keeps the crowd feeling energetic throughout the extended set, which features almost every track from their two albums.
It’s quite common to walk out of a gig and feel elated. It’s less frequent to still have that feeling the following day, and even rarer to wish you were going to go back tonight and see it all again. Splendid.
The Age Of Revolution
Boom Boom Afredi
Out In The Middle
Gentlemen & Players
It's Just Not Cricket
Test Match Special
Rain Stops Play
Mason On The Boundary
Line And Length
The Sweet Spot
The Laughing Cavaliers
The Third Man
Nudging And Nurdling
The Coin Toss
Meeting Mr MiandadThe Duckworth Lewis Method play Leeds (Brudenell Social Club) on Fri Sep 27th, Bristol (St George's Club) on Sat Sep 28th and Birmingham (Glee Club) on Sun Sep 29th. They're also set to play Dublin (Olympia) on Wed Nov 27th and Belfast (Limelight) on Thur Nov 28th. For more info, visit their website.
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