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Tuesday 25 September 2018

A View From The Back Of The Room: MAN

Man & Glas, The Globe Cardiff

So when a band is on their 50th anniversary tour it would be remiss of us not to attend, when that band is from Wales and something of a legendary act round these parts then it would be positively criminal. Playing just three dates in Wales I went down to the show in The Glob and as the room filled with a mature fan base, sprinkled with the odd younger psych fan like myself, there were stories of the band Padget Rooms Penarth gigs. their early tours and multiple member changes.

First up though decked out in the best shirts of the night was Blackwood trio Glas (8) opening with Blackwood Boogie this three piece then proceeded to get the crowd going with classic R&B that brings in country, rock n roll and blues for a very loud noise, Dai John on vocals and bass, works it playing some groovy finger-style rhythms that could have been coming from a stand up bass rather than the electric, he's got the tick-tock drums of Sam Andrews behind him adding the shuffle to every track. On lead guitar James Oliver peels off lick after bluesy lick bobbing his head like Wilco Johnson as he plays surf slides and staccato jagged riffs. A rollicking opening band who were forced into an encore by the crowd taking full advantage of The Globe's drinks offers, a neat country number later and they managed to leave the stage.       

So with the crowd now filling the room the Welsh psychedelic rockers Man (8) took to the stage with longest serving member Martin Ace (bass/vocals) leading from the middle of the stage. He's flanked by Josh Ace on guitars/vocals/keys, James Beck on guitar either side of him, Malcolm Morley on keys and acoustic guitar (who was member of Man between 1974 & 1976) with over 423 releases, on 75 labels they had a lot songs to choose from so to take a risk on two new unreleased songs called Manor Farm and The Holy Flame Of Freedom but they mixed it with classics like Romain which had James Beck playing some mean slide. Long psych jams turned to short blues driven rockers in an instance Martin is a warm, mild mannered frontman cracking jokes with his Welsh humour striking a chord with the audience. Backed by the young(er) band the performance was infused with energy as Martin and Josh traded vocals replicating the sound of the early material well. With a new album on the way there seems to be no signs of slowing down so here's to another 10 years of Man!

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