Willy Mason

Willy Mason with support from Kid Carpet ( 17/04/2005 Manchester Academy 2) - Live Review

Willy Mason with support from Kid Carpet ( 17/04/2005 Manchester Academy 2) - Live Review
Willy Mason

with support from Kid Carpet

(17/04/2005 Manchester Academy 2)

A Bristol born one man hybrid of System 7, Billy Bragg and hint of Underworld that is Kid Carpet brought social realism into the room, via his “Kiddy Disco Punk” sound and zapped it out like it were rays from an alien laser gun. The crashing guitar and searing synths melted together, producing sparks that ignitedafiery elementto Kid Carpet’s music.This was at its brightest in thedarting ‘Your Love’ and a song towards the end of an intriguing setcovering the mundane topic ofsigning on in Bristol.

With bands like the Kaiser Chiefs, Bloc Party and The Killers bringing pizzazz and glamour into music with their slick attire and Brit pop reviving riffs, there seems no place in this modern era for the

earnest, endearing, down to earth minimalist music of the maudlin Massachusetts born 20 year old; Willy Mason. This is could not be further from the truth though, as the700 plus gatherersin theAcademy venue stretched and strained to get the best possible view of the down to earth Dylan replacement, as many critics are already labelling him. The success of selling over 70,000 copies of his debut album ‘Where Humans Eat’ meant that unlike his solo support slot for the 22-20s last year, Willy was able to afford to bring his drum playing younger brother; Samover to give his set an added kick.

The drum beat of Sam helped to pound every note of longing, emotive and powerful tracks such as ‘Fear No Pain’ into the hearts of listeners, as he ably provided a foundation for Willy’s commanding Adam Green covering Bob Dylan and a splash of Ian Mculloch vocal touchto take off andauthoritatively glide around the room. The poetic and philosophical nature of Willy’s work was illuminated in the emotive and proud ‘Hard Hand To Hold’, as the lyrics though uplifting and softly sung, seemed to fly around the captivated audience touching more nerves than a Ron Atkinson football commentary;

“It becomes painfully clear

That as long as it's a fight, you'll never win,

And when you get to the door

You're still so busy fighting wars”.

The anthemic Oxygen was the obvious crowd highlight of seventy minutes of music with heart and integrity. However, the track did not stand out that much, but that is purely and simply down to the fact that Willy has depth and integrity and plies that into whatever he does.



David Adair