Electric Six

Electric six - Manchester Academy 2 - Live Review

Electric six

Manchester Academy 2

Wednesday December 1 st 2004

As the opposite side of town saw spandex wearing and interesting headgear adorning hoards filing into the cavernous MEN Arena, hungry for their yearly dose of stadium rock, it was clear glam-metallers The Darkness were in town, just in time for the festive frivolities.

Oxford Road proved a different story, as the more traditional gig venues attracted an all together different crowd, a crowd dressed like

Electric six - Manchester Academy 2 - Live Review

they were going to a gig and not a hen night. As they made their way into the intimate Academy 2, what they had in store was a somewhat more genuine and modest band, albeit still eccentric, but using that to their advantage and not as a necessity.

Detroit band Electric Six returned to Manchester following their successful stint at next doors Academy 1.

Far from dampening their spirits, the smaller venue appeared to pour more fuel on the fire, as the band steamed through their set, consisting of “Synthesiser” and other favourites from their current album “Fire,” preferring to use charisma, and not forceful showiness to add spice to their show.

Another refreshing thing about Electric Six is that they strike a good balance between their well-played music, and quirky antics, there is no need for the use of antics and acrobatics, or over the top guitars here. Despite the lack of new material, the band still manage to fill the venue and play as though the music was as fresh as a new album. The crowd has as much energy and appreciation to offer for all their favourite tracks, from their favourite band, and provide an energy fuelled pit. Naturally the crowd reaction is best for the familiar tracks and all round charismatic sing-along tunes, starting with the infectious “Danger High Voltage.” The excitement is maintained as the band return for the encore, with the familiar intro to smash hit “Gaybar” sounding, with both band and audience bouncing back. The band are this time dressed in casual t-shirts as though having just arrived home from work, discarding their previous attire, the quirky and trademark office like suits, now is their time to relax, however switch off they do not.

If you thought the atmosphere couldn’t get any more electric, think again, an admirable achievement for a band that had the crowd at full voltage for the whole show. As predicted latest single and Queen cover “Radio Gaga” prompted hands raised above heads for the famous hand clapping part and maintained if not strengthened enthusiastic singing and dancing along.

So whilst Hawkins was swinging from the roof on a stuffed tiger, whilst playing one of his trademark squealing guitar solos, forgetting there are other members in the band, Electric Six preferred the stage to a trapeze, and to utilise each of their five members equally. A fun and quality gig from a fun and quality band.


Katherine Tomlinson