the Jesus and Mary Chain – Dead Slow Rock’n'Roll

Man, I kid you not, I’m almost in tears right now – I’ve just got back from seeing one of the best bands of my adolescence play in a stunning return to form at Brixton Academy. I’m talking about the Jesus & Mary Chain – the band that made me want to pick up a bass guitar and turn the gain up to 11.  I’m spellbound, shocked and slightly awed.

Jim Reid

There’s more to this than you might think – I’ve always, always rated this band – Just Like Honey is one of my favourite songs of all time. And I have seen them before – back in the days when they’d blast through the set with such feral animosity that you couldn’t tell where one song ended and another began. Where Jim would say nary a word to the audience and William would turn his back on us. Maybe they were just a bit shy back then.

None of that was in evidence tonight: they opened with Never Understand and the gig just got better and better. Jim acknowledged the audience with a few sharp wisecracks and the performance was pitch-perfect. By the time they played Happy When it Rains, I was already in the moshpit being bounced around by hundreds of like-minded JAMC devotees. Have you ever been in a slow mosh?

Nine Million Rainy Days made it for me – not least because they played it straight after I’d shouted it out – it just blew me away. I’m pretty sure they closed out with an old Syd Barrett song, Vegetable Man, and I think they played I Wanna be Yr Dog at one point too.

This wasn’t a gig, this was a five-star moment in Rock’n'Roll history.

Right, I’m off to find my PsychoCandy LP…


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