PAUL Weller arrives on stage in York for the fifth date of a ten-day tour, promoting the May release of his latest album A Kind Revolution, with 2018 arena tour dates already announced.
White Sky, from previous album Saturn's Pattern, kicks off a back catalogue journey that takes in The Jam, The Style Council and extensive solo material. The sell-out crowd, including a few Paul Weller haircuts, are more lively during the older material like Man In The Corner Shop. The six-piece band are on excellent form, the sound is clean and precise, and Weller swaps between guitar and piano with ease.
New songs include possible single Long, Long Road, Woo Se Mama and The Cranes Are Back, the latter prefaced with a brief message about Syria, “a song for hope in a hopeless time”.
After 90 minutes, the band leave the stage for a “brief intermission” and the next five songs are seated and acoustic. There’s not much chat during the 30-song performance, but responding to a brief heckle, Weller acerbically responds “I’ve got a lot of songs, I can play all night”.
A brief mention for the brave lady from the Barbican’s cleaning team, who is dispatched during Wildwood into the tightly packed crowd with mop and bucket.
The four encores include new song The Impossible Idea, and ironically the penultimate song is The Jam’s Start!. Big hit The Changingman closes the night and a tired, appreciative audience leave in good spirits.
Review by Dave Robertson