Doing justice to a classic LP in a live setting is harder than it might seem. It requires finding a middle ground between reinterpretation and faithfulness; skew too far in either direction and fans will feel cheated. Luckily, The Wedding Present have a bit of experience in this area, having taken their debut LP George Best on the road in 2007 to celebrate its 20th anniversary. This time around the band dug into the 1989 indie-pop stone classic Bizarro and proved more than up to the task. After warming up with a few new numbers, the band launched into “Brassneck”, rendering the song’s bright, jangly guitars and pent up frustrations expertly. “This is quite an intense LP, in case you hadn’t noticed,” head Weddoe David Gedge quipped about halfway through side one. Eschewing an encore (as they are wont to do), the band played Bizarro front-to-back, channeling all of its energy, charm and lovelorn wit. But that didn’t stop fans from yelling out requests. When asked to play “Box Elder” (a Pavement cover that appears on the U.S. reissue of the album), Gedge explained that they were only running through the “classic” original UK version. When a fan yelled out “Come back next year and play Seamonsters,” however, Gedge seemed more amenable. “I will if you make it worth my while,” he said with a grin.
// Notes from the Road
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