Friday, 6 March 2015

Live Review: Paul Weller at Plymouth Pavilions by Greg Horn of the Express & Echo

Plymouth Pavilions was packed to the rafters with a mix of old and young mods out to catch the Modfather blast out some of his much loved hits. 

With a new album out in May, new songs were expected but the set started with the early classic, Uh Huh Oh Yeh setting the tone for the rest of the night. 

Weller doesn’t always oblige with a greatest hit set, but tonight the balance between old and new was just right. White Sky, his new single was a highlight and sounded like it could become a firm live favourite. 

Steve Cradock has remained one of Weller’s most trusted collaborators and tonight he once again showed why he is one of Britain’s best guitarists. 

The use of an extra percussionist tonight also worked and added a new dimension to some of the songs, most notably to Porcelain Gods which sounded epic tonight. 

The second part of the set featured classic singles including From the Floorboards Up, Peacock Suit and his 2014 single Brand New Toy. The set finished with the brooding sing-a-long Whirlpools End, the penultimate track from his 1995 album Stanley Road. 

Expectations were high for an encore and fans were treated to not one but two encores during which he took to the piano to play the beautiful Broken Stones. 

Picking Up Sticks kept the mood calm before the crowd had their final anthem to sing and shuffle to with The Changingman ending the night. 

Weller looked to be enjoying himself on the first night of this new tour. He shows no sign of slowing down and still possesses that energy that has defined his style for 40 years. 

By Greg Horn

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