Support: She Makes War
After getting dragged to see NMA in this very venue last year I somehow found myself back (one day short of) a year later. The gig in 2014 was an eye opener for me. A sea of shirtless fans (including a few women). Most moshing good naturedly, others with their arms outstretched whilst sat on the shoulders of friends or strangers. There was no change this year. Fantastic to see. I still know very little about New Model Army. Even though I have listened to them a lot the last few weeks in readiness for tonight I still couldn't tell you an album name (I'm pretty useless like that). What I do know however is what an outstanding live band they are. Which I guess they should be after thirty five years in the business.
Last year myself and friend, and NMA nut, Mark, moshed with the best of them for the entire gig...some three hours if I remember rightly. Alas Mark's back prevented him from taking part here (he's getting old) and he took up a safe position away from danger. As for me well I only managed thirty minutes before my dodgy left knee felt it couldn't take any more (I'm also getting old). My decision to step away from the pit also coincided with my converse shoe deciding to come away from my right foot. I thought it was a goner. Visions of hopping down to the Kentish Town tube station after the show flashed across my mind. Luckily though a gap opened up and there it was, my right, red, beauty of a piece of footwear, staring back at me covered in spilt beer. I crouched down (not wise in the middle of a mosh pit) and grabbed it before pushing my way out of the madness. As I popped my shoe back on, my right knee was busy swelling up. Even in my semi drunk state I realised that now would be the time to watch the rest of the gig from further back. I may finally be getting some sense.
Justin Sullivan and band have a very loyal following and tonight every word was sung back. Twenty-one songs and two encores flew by. I managed to annoy a lady near me by jumping up and down in her vicinity. Apologies for that...but you were standing at a New Model Army gig. Still I was a little drunk and let's face it there is nothing worse than been stood next to a drunk idiot. Apart from Mrs Annoyed Lady there were smiles on faces everywhere...a communal feeling of joy that this crowd seems to revel in. Indeed the NMA shows do feel more like a get together for old friends. Will I be back next year? Probably. I may listen to a few more of their records though. I may wear better shoes as well...and also wear some strapping on my knee...also I may not quite have as much to drink beforehand. I don't normally...Christmas is a bastard though.
Until next year.
Ticket: December 11th 2015
Ticket Price: £22.50