Sunday, November 13, 2011

Review: The Sisters Of Mercy Live at The Olympia.

The Olympia was jam-packed to the rafters for a band that most of us had either forgotten about, or are completely unaware of. Unsurprising, as lineup changes and comical record company wrangling and refusal, has meant that it is over twenty years since The Sisters Of Mercy have released an album. Back In the days of 1990′s Vision Thing album, you would have struggled to tell singerAndrew Eldritch apart from The Cult’s, Ian Astbury, in a police lineup. Nowadays Eldritch, looks rather more Judas Priest, than Gothic preternatural sex-God. Thankfully his commanding stage presence and his distinctive voice, remain the same.

A set list of greatest hits, diehard fan favourites and unreleased new material, is well received by a thronging expectant crowd. The new lineup is well-studied and proficient. The songs are delivered passionately, with fresh intent, that indicates the will to create the infamous “next album”, may actually exist. Doktor Avalanche, the only other constant in The Sisters of Mercy lineup, delivers pounding digital beats. Ensuring that the band are like German trains. Always on time. Eldritch’s scolding voice hasn’t lost any of its imperialistic gravitas. his lyrics (old and new) are dark, highly vivid and often scathing of US foreign policy.

The opening barrage of tracks including “First And Last And Always”, “Marian”  & “Detonation Boulevard” showcased the bands ability to supply a killer chorus, based on a diverse range subjects, from geopolitical issues to love and death,  in a lyrically witty and fun way.

The empire themed “Dominion/Mother Russia” saw the band kick things up a notch or two. Fan Favourite “Alice” was well received. But the band really came into their own on songs such as the epic “This Corrosion” and “More” which gave the audience plenty of opportunity to raise their hands in the air and sing along.

A second encore of “Lucretia My Reflection”, “Vision Thing” and “Temple of Love”. Was the icing on the cake of a tour de force performance, that proved that The Sisters Of Mercy, should not be forgotten or looked down upon. Rather they should be cherished, as one of the great alternative bands of the 80′s and held in the same regard as the likes of The Cure.

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