Steve Mason – Live

12 Nov
mason
Concorde 2: October 28, 2013
One of the most glaring omissions from this year’s much-derided Mercury Music Prize shortlist was Steve Mason’s stunning 20 song-strong polemic Monkey Minds in the Devil’s Time.

The former Beta Band main man has never been shy to wear his heart on his sleeve – be it personally or politically – but as tonight’s passion-fuelled set showed, his zeal and steal is stronger than ever.

Stand out track from the latest album, Fire!, introduced as “us raining down retribution from a great height on the establishment”, was a revolutionary revelation with Mason’s disarmingly calm yet cutting vocals roughed-up by menacing bass and piercing guitars amid an almost debilitating lighting display which flooded the stage in a fiery mix of oranges and reds.

“Where do we go from here?,” he chanted, “It’s clear”.

It was the first of several calls to arms, but Mason was careful to make sure this didn’t descend into a soap box set, perfectly offsetting some of his barricade-manning missives with the more mellow offerings from 2010’s Boys Outside, such as the expansive and lush All Come Down which was a poignant sea of calm amid the agit-pop storm.

As for the Mercury Prize, Mason doesn’t seem to give a monkey’s. He’s clearly got far bigger fish to fry.

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