Record Overplayed
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Maximo Park | Newcastle Academy | 13/05/09

Gig Review and Photos by Dawn

There's a lyric on Maximo Park's new album which runs "I threw my body into its actions". Watching frontman Paul Smith hurl himself around the Academy stage in a somewhat unhinged fashion of which Tim Booth would be proud, never have a band's words seemed quite so apt.

Returning to Newcastle for the first of two homecoming shows (although let's just get straight once and for all that, although the band formed there, Paul was actually born and bred in Teesside, not Tyneside) the band look genuinely thrilled by the roof-raising racket generated by a sell-out crowd as they open with Graffiti and two tracks from new LP Quicken the HeartWraithlike and The Penultimate Clinch.

Not content to let Paul provide all the energy, Lukas Wooller also spends a good deal of the evening bouncing around – at least, as much as his keyboard playing will allow. Paul, meanwhile, spends much of Books in Boxes prowling the stage like a panther about to go in for the kill. When he's not wielding the microphone stand like his weapon of choice, he's also prone to alternating between a slightly camp hip wiggle, or jogging on the spot à la David Byrne.

As the opening sounds of Going Missing fill the venue, the crowd erupt once more. Red strip lights burn like fire illuminating Duncan Lloyd and Archis Tiku's identical guitar poses at opposite sides of the stage before the meet face to face in the middle as Paul executes a perfect scissor kick centre stage.

The new tracks are well received, but tonight it's old favourites Girls Who Play Guitars and show closer Apply Some Pressure which attract the biggest singalongs.

Sadly there's no room in the set for the sublime Karaoke Plays but Now I’m All Over the Shop and Our Velocity are simply fantastic and it's so unusual (and brilliant) in the music world to hear such spikey guitar anthems sung in a broad Billingham accent.

'Mon the Park!

With huge thanks to Ian, John and the staff at the Academy. Visit www.maximopark.com for more information.

 

 


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