Punk bastions The Buzzcocks formed in Year Zero (1976) and were at the forefront of the movement during the pivotal years. Clever lyrics and some catchy tunes made them one of the exceptional faces of punk. 2009 may be the year of reunions, but The Buzzcocks have been promoting their wares, on and off for the past 20 years. They have honed a classic performance and a tight set. For this tour there is no denying that they are going for a no frills excursion with little repartee between songs. As promised the set list was firmly and unashamedly based around the first 2 LP’s: Another Music In A Different Kitchen and Love Bites.
Tracks like -I Need’ were met with enthusiastic applause whilst -Sixteen Again’ and of course -Ever Fallen in Love’ gave way to mass euphoria from the crowd. Steve Diggle was in full Pete Townshend mode – arm swinging like the windmill. Whilst Shelley’s distinctive and unusual voice was all powerful and still magnetic, only letting up occasionally to allow Diggle lead vocal. However Diggle unashamedly took the centre stage for a bit of self promotion- throwing out bundles of flyers for his own new album. The crowd itself were a healthy mix of young and old who came together for the evening, with the old school showing the youngsters how to really mosh and pogo.
The anthem kings gave us power packed intense non stop driving punk. A great, unpretentious set gave way to an understated exit at the end of the show, but the crowd wanted and knew they would get more. Sure enough the band, and the audience, only really came into full flourish for the blistering 30 minute encore packed with the majority of the more recognisable singles. -Orgasm Addict’ started the melee, followed by -What Do I Get’ . The eventual climax was the classic -Everybody’s Happy Now’ and Diggle’s vocal -Harmony in my Head’, which proved a fitting end to a great night retro pop punk legends.