The last time I saw Maximo Park was when they supported The Libertines at Hyde Park in 2013 and since then I have eagerly anticipated seeing a headline show. Albert Hall was the special setting for their show marking 10 years since the release of their Mercury nominated album A Certain Trigger. They split the show into two halves, the first was a warm up of singles that were not on the aforementioned album and the second half was A Certain Trigger in full.
They hit the stage, energetic as ever and played a wonderful first 45 minute set compiled of hits, stage acrobatics, and incredible riffs. Opener Girls With Guitars provided the crowd with what they wanted right at the start of the show – it is one of their most popular songs and the crowd responded choir-like, belting out the chorus back at the Geordie quintet. Other highlights from their warm up set included critically acclaimed single Russian Literature; Our Velocity (which most people know from numerous TV ads); and of course Books From Boxes. The crowd let out a massive cheer when they heard the starting riff from arguably Maximo Park’s most famous song. Every so often at a gig you witness a moment which you want to last a lot longer than possible and hearing Books From Boxes in the iconic Manchester venue was one of those moments.
There was then a break for people to refuel. A few minutes later and out come the band ready to play A Certain Trigger in full and they nailed it. Paul Smith is a brilliant frontman and he controlled the crowd perfectly for this rare recital of a cult classic album. You don’t need me to tell you the order of the songs, just go and look at the album, I’m sure you have it. Highlights were Signal and Sign, Apply Some Pressure, and Kiss You Better. The only drawback being that there was a lack of a spectacular finale because they had to finish on the closing song of the album – but after the extravaganza that the crowd had just witnessed, and all of the songs sounding perfect, no one seemed bothered.
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Review by Jack McCabe |