Liam Frost: Manchester – live review

Liam Frost

Manchester Deaf Institute

4th October 2013

It’s been a long old road for fans of Liam Frost.

I remember seeing him at Castlefield Bowl way back in the early 2000’s, when he was a fresh-faced folkie feted by Tony Wilson amongst others (those were the days). 2006 saw an intense and, at times, beautiful debut ‘Show me how the Spectres Dance’, he was on national radio with all time Manchester classic ‘The Mourners of St Paul’s’ and then….. Record company wrangles and other issues meant a 3 year wait for the thoroughly decent (even if Liam may not agree) ‘We Ain’t Got No Money Honey, But We Got Rain’, again critically well received, again, as far as music was concerned, Liam seemed to drift into the wind.

By contrast, the last year or so has been prolific. Two great nights at the Anthony Burgess Foundation in May has led to this sell out at the Deaf Institute.

Manchester’s best open secret, or ‘our Liam’ as we Prestwich folk call him, treats us to some great new songs from a forthcoming EP. Liam’s been dividing his time between the mighty Tokolosh and his own stuff, and he’s been on holiday, as he reveals during his witty mid song banter (Turkey if you’re interested). Alongside the new songs, he gives us ‘Skylark Avenue’ and ‘Hand in Mine’ (great Manchester singalong, boo to London) from the ‘difficult’ 2nd album, the still heartbreaking ‘Is This Love?’ and timeless ‘Mourners of St.Paul’s’ from his first, and a gut-wrenching cover of Sade’s ‘Ordinary Love’ (honest, check Youtube).

Despite the loss and heartbreak evident in his songs, the emphasis for Liam, and Tokolosh as it happens, appears to be having fun, and y’know, maybe just enjoying playing music for people. We’d all love him to be big, because we all want ‘one of ours’ to do well, but if he just wants to play his dark, troubling, yet uplifting songs for us lucky people, then we’d all be happy, hopefully Liam as well.

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