Pete Wylie: Zanzibar, Liverpool – live review
28th March 2014
My first thoughts on entering the venue was if the fire brigade turned up now, the gig would be off. I’ve never seen this place so full. It was like the whole of the city had come to praise its favourite son. I knew this was a big deal to Wylie, and it was nice to know it was a big deal to his fans and friends also.
First up was Pete’s daughter Mersey, who accompanied only by keyboard player Jack Beacall delivered a short set of songs of stunning power and clarity. Her voice filled the room, and I for one wish she had played longer. In a world of X factor auto tuning dross the fact this woman remains largely unknown is criminal.
And so to the main event, Wylie strides on stage looking dare I say? nervous. Those nerves soon evaporated as the reception to the opening number ‘Come back’ almost took the roof off, this would not have surprised me as there seemed to be people hanging off it, such was the minimal space in there.
Next up ‘Better Scream’ dedicated to ‘me mates from Eric’s’ including the legend that is Doreen Allen. ‘The Day Margaret Thatcher Dies’ is next, ‘I should have updated it, but didn’t wanna waste any more time on the cunt’ quipped Pete. This is a master class in song writing, ‘Your Mother Must Be Very Proud’ ‘Sing All The Saddest Songs’ ‘FourElevenFortyFour’.
This was Wylie across the ages, and as a bonus we even got a new song, ‘All In It Together’ the phrase coined by our wonderful government to make us believe that they really do care. We then get a special mention of the Justice tour, and Pete dedicated the Johnny Thunders classic ‘You Can’t Put Your Arms Around A Memory’ to the 96 and their families, this song slides nicely into ‘Heart As Big As Liverpool’ a modern classic by anyone’s standard.
The set closes with ‘Seven Minutes To Midnight’ and the classic ‘Story Of The Blues’ and never have I heard that song delivered with such passion, both on stage and off. Special mention must also go to young guitarist Tom Carroll who accompanied Pete on second guitar and backing vocals, along with Mersey. He did a great job, and the look on Wylie’s face due to his daughter being up there with him was a joy to behold. Before the end Pete promised us more gigs, more new songs and even a book and a musical! Like Pete said it’s the start of a new adventure, I can’t wait to see where it leads him. COME BACK? Yes please and as soon as possible!! Richie Rocker