Gig Review @funlovincrims @Rock_City_Notts #FunLovinCriminals #MusicIsEverything

On 6th February 2016 at Rock City in Nottingham, there was a delicious Hip Hop, Funk, Blues and Rock soup on the menu courtesy of gourmet musical chefs Huey Morgan, Brian Leiser and Frank Benbibi. Yep, Fun Lovin’ Criminals were back, on tour to celebrate 20 years of “Come Find Yourself”, a delectable dish indeed.

The three amigos swaggered onto the stage to greet a crowd who immediately lapped up the atmosphere, and who as a consortium clamoured for attention from the men in sharp suits with even sharper eyes. Their baying was rewarded with a genuine attentiveness from Huey and an effortless launch into “The Fun Lovin’ Criminal”, track one of the “Come Find Yourself” album, which they went on to perform in its entirety.

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Pulling out all the stops, Fun Lovin’ Criminals unwaveringly executed their live interpretation of their debut album with the panache and freshness it always had. This was nostalgia, but didn’t feel old.

Of course, it helped that the venue was packed to the rafters. If any more people had entered the building, they would have had to cling to the walls. Even then, I think they’d still find a way to groove to these anthemic tunes. There was a sense of euphoria, and the heat was rising to levels that would threaten to set the place alight.

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I had a sense that all three band members were entirely equal, inasmuch as there didn’t seem to be a favourite as far as their followers were concerned, or one more skilled than the others. There was an obvious mutual respect between the three of them, and they clearly revel in and benefit from playing together.

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Having said that, there is absolutely no doubting Huey’s natural ability to balance the cool, calm, collected persona with his sex appeal and charisma. He has a low lion-like purr to his vocal, and his incredibly slick guitar playing is first-rate.

Every nuance of the bass, each collision of drumstick and drum, and all of the guitar inflections were punctuated with keyboards, harmonica and trumpets with perfect timing and composure.

Fun Lovin’ Criminals bridge genres as if it’s a completely ordinary thing to do. In essence, they make it look easy, and that’s definitely nowhere near average.

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In conclusion, I would like seconds of this soup please, waiter. Forget the bowl and spoon – I’ll have the whole saucepan full. Pronto.

Setlist:

  1. The Fun Lovin’ Criminal
  2. Passive/Aggressive
  3. The Grave and the Constant
  4. Scooby Snacks
  5. Smoke ‘Em
  6. Bombin’ the L
  7. I Can’t Get With That
  8. King of New York
  9. We Have All the Time in the World
  10. Bear Hug
  11. Come Find Yourself
  12. Crime and Punishment
  13. Methadonia
  14. Loco
  15. We, The Three
  16. Back on the Block
  17. Korean Bodega
  18. Love Unlimited
  19. Big Night Out
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