Feeling under the weather I decided to venture over to Leicester to witness the opening show of the latest Gary Numan tour, Machine Music 2012. Having bought a ticket outside for a nice reduced price of £15.00 I ventured into the dark venue that once was the Percy Gee Buildings at Leicester University. There I was met by the blue neon lighting which could have been from an early Numan video. The support came in the shape of Officers who gave a decent set and whom have just have worked with Gary.
As 9pm arrived the lights again went down for the arrival of the main act. The giant screen behind the drum kit was used throughout the night. The images were supplied by winning entries submitted by Numan fans for certain songs. A great gesture and a good way to save money on producing them yourself. The screen was dominated by a woman’s lips painted blue informing us ‘Berserker‘ was the opening number. The band looked anxious to start off with but soon fell into stride behind Gary’s vocals.
We were not disappointed with the selection of tracks tonight which included the early singles of ‘Bombers‘ which still sounds relevant and the punky ‘That’s Too Bad‘. The bass on both tracks was particularly excellent and sat well with some of his latest material played during the set. ‘Down In The Park‘ a personal favourite of mine was as usual played to a high standard. The first real audience participation came with the performance of ‘We Are Glass‘ a song known even by the non-numanoids in the crowd.
I was actually impressed by ‘This Wreckage‘, a song I’ve always regarded as a bit nondescript but tonight it seemed to take on a bigger bolder face. I will have to go back and listen to studio version again to see if I afforded it some injustice previously. The anthem track ‘I Die You Die‘ had fans hands aloft throughout. This made me realise that the average Numan fan seemed to stand well over six-feet. Received well tonight was Gary’s tribute paid to the late drummer and close friend Cedric Sharpley.
The show seemed to be over early when in-fact he had been on stage well over an hour and a half. The encore included the two monsters ‘Cars‘ followed by a sort of worship me version of ‘Are Friends Electric‘ which shifted from a wall of noise to just Gary’s vocals in places. Certain hit songs were absent from the set, but being as the man has a vast catalogue you could forgive him for that. It was clearly evident to see that this man was totally at home on stage and was enjoying every minute of it, as were the audience too.
If I could find fault in the concert it would be that the vocals were too low in the mix at times. Being as this was show number one, I’m sure future gigs will hopefully have this sorted out. The only other blight on the night was the annoying drunkard who did not know any words to the songs. He just roared out in people’s ears, until I told him to button it – a note I took literally from Mr. Mallinder earlier in the day.