SKIDS – VOODOO RADIO – LIVE: CONCORDE 2, 6 July 2023. Brighton.
Its the SKIDS! and Voodoo Radio on the same bill. We were in for a treat from two great bands, Both outfits back in Brighton at Concorde 2. Lets go into the valley….
The Skids are a Scottish punk rock and new wave band, formed in Dunfermline, Fife in 1977 by Stuart Adamson (guitar, keyboards, percussion and backing vocals), William Simpson (bass guitar and backing vocals), Thomas Kellichan (drums) and Richard Jobson (vocals, guitar and keyboards). Their biggest success was the 1979 single “Into the Valley”, the 1980 album The Absolute Game, and now topping charts in various places with Destination Düsseldorf.
Scottish punk legends The Skids took to Brightons Concorde 2 on a Thursday night, and play a stormer of a set to a large crowd of fans. Chatting with Richard Jobson, or Jobbo as he reminded me with a twinkle in his eye and that smile of his, explained that currently, the Skids are in the midst of a UK tour. Everyone was a bit knackered he explained, but had a couple of days off coming up. The band are on a promotional tour in line with the latest release of ‘Destination Düsseldorf’. A bit “knackered” – well considering the show the Skids were about to unleash, that statement was hard to believe. Richard and the band didn’t stop for over an hour. Awesome display.
Jobson just doesn’t stop dancing! He explained later that the banter between the songs is a way of getting his breath back! His energy again tonight was most impressive and I reckon he could put some of the younger bands out there to shame!
They fired up a set full of those well-loved crowd pleasing anthems from the bands 70s, 80s back catalogue of releases and albums and some of their more recent material. I loved the live version of Charles tonight as I and the crowd joined in. Apart from those big hits, this one was a set highlight for me tonight. The guitars buzzing out the riff, a pumping bass line and some powerful drums all backed with Jobsons powerful vocals. Stunning rendition!
Early into the set Richard paid respect and showed love for his former band mate Stuart Adamson (RIP). He also mentioned with a grin about the fact he left the Skids and went on to bigger things with Big Country. A nice and timely reminder of his friend.
We had lots of inter song chat, calling out Rock Stars In Their Underpants and how Paula Yates talked him and Steve Jones (Sex Pistols) to do a photo shoot for the book. That picture haunts him to this very day.
As I mentioned before – this was a fabulous mixture of old and new material. A well put together set and perfectly executed. From the get-go Jobson immediately took over the stage, he is a big fella and is captivating, and charming, to watch with his engaging and powerful stage presence. He doesn’t keep still for a second, he has won the “trickiest person to photo” award, he previously won this in 2018 and 2021! I Can’t blame him though – how can you keep still to that music? A quick check of blurred photos confirmed he had done it again. I told him about the award when we met up in Edinburgh in 2018 and he roared with laughter.
The Skids hit the stage to a loud and long lasting rapturous reception. Brighton was ready for this. They opened up with a new hot track, Open Your Eyes, then Charade and then Of One Skin. A cracking start! A couple more songs in and next up was the classic Saints Are Coming. Jobson then pointed out Working For The Yankee Dollar means pretty much the same thing today as it did when it was originally recorded.
The Skids reformed in 2007 to pay tribute to Stuart Adamson, with Big Country bandmate Bruce Watson and his son Jamie Watson sharing guitar duties. Great to see this duo back on stage in Brighton tonight.
So good to hear those older classics played with such vigour and replicating that distinctive Adamson unique guitar style. Those included The Saints are Coming, Circus Games, Working for the Yankee Dollar, and Masquerade. The crowd, and myself included, joined in and pretty much danced and sang for the whole set! Jobson wanted us to have fun tonight, well I can confirm mission accomplished!
The band made up tonight was with Richard Jobson – vocals, charm and wit, Bruce Watson – guitar, backing vocals, Leaps and grins, Jamie Watson – guitar and assisting also with backing vocals and two newer recruits who I had not seen before, Gil Allan on bass and at the back, from Dunfermline, Nick Hernandez hitting those drums.
The fabulous Circus Games rocked us and those Brighton voices sang out true and loud! “Albert Tatlock” and then we were off into the track he told me previously that was recorded for a bit of a laugh TV Stars! This originally was a B-side on the 7 inch vinyl release of Into The valley. The crowd cheered and shouted in time, even drowning out the band at times!
The gig tonight was perfect, astounding! The sound mix and lighting were spot on from the Concorde 2 team. Yes, there was smoke; it was used sparingly and therefore really atmospheric. Good Job well done Concorde 2!
The band were so tight and energetic from start to finish. Richard doesn’t keep still for a second. Richard Jobson’s chat with us and inter band banter between some of the earlier songs oozed with that warm Scottish charm and humour.
A shout for a great live cover Complete Control (The Clash) recorded during lockdown for an album Songs from a Haunted Ballroom.
Leo Sayer once again received a roasting from Richard, hilarious stuff. I don’t think he will ever forget Leo Sayers album holding off The Skids album from the coveted number one album slot! I always expect to see Leo turn up at a Skids Brighton gig as he lives near in Shoreham.
Get ready Brighton! Some storming songs coming up – Jobson now whirling on stage and fist pumping the air with a trip back to 1980 and 1979 waiting to unleash – hold on tight Brighton it’s going to get loud! Circus Games,
Then that bass thumping intro and instantly recognisable, even if Mr Watson did throw in a couple of starts on his guitar for Into The Valley, it lit the crowds fuse! The thumbing bass line sparked the song into life as the Watsons kicked it up with their guitars.
The massive Olympian closed the set. “One more song” went the chant from the crowd. Jobson said he hoped we didn’t mind another song from the new album to close. Tidal Wave brought things to an end.
A great night thank you Mr Jobson, sorry Jobbo, and the guys. Plenty more fuel in the tank from these guys so go see em live! Congrats on the new album, it’s a belter and it’s Skids!
The Saints Are Coming! After a mention in the set from Richard after a fan had previously asked why Skids are doing U2 covers!
Skids are on the WWW here!
Paige and Tony, from chatting with them at their first gig, and listening to their set again tonight are indeed very much aware that this genre of rock/punky/pop music can still be fun. It’s how it should be and these guys deliver on that.
You might think these two are maybe some kind of “novelty”. Let me assure you they are not, these guys are totally serious and proceeded to give a large Concorde 2 crowd a set of top rocking tunes, but keep an air of fun and mischief mixed in. They put it all together and pull it off in style. I had been given a heads up on these guys from Tony, Sounds Of The Suburbs record store in London after he had them play an in-store session.
Eat Your Words, a spiky little number got the 30 minute set underway. Tony blitzed his guitar for chords for Pretty Boy as Paige hammered on the kit. They have a new EP out “Stupid Humans” which features a cover of C30 C60 C90 Go! Originally performed by Bow Wow Wow. It also has a damn infectious Christmas number.
Voodoo Radio get better and better. Paige leads the chat but tonight Tony was chipping in more and more. Wonderful to see. We then had four tracks from the first release, a mini album on yellow vinyl called Pop Pills.
Super hooked up guitar riffs and a powerful beat. They had every person in the room fixed to the spot and Concorde 2 was pretty full as their set progressed.
The eye wateringly good Slag bank was delivered again tonight with gusto and Paige got the crowd again to respond to her invitation to respond to her cry of OGGY OGGY OY! We then had a track from that new EP, Dog. Only one track from their latest release. Thn back to Pop Pills to close with She’s So Toxic, Space Girl and completing their slot with Turn Out The Light.
They have been recently praised by Vive Le Rock. Voodoo Radio will give you a powerful punky/rocky set loaded with lyrics that mean something and powerful guitar riffs.
Tony puts in some quality almost Quo/ACDC styled power punk riffs. The set is full of filthy, brilliantly catchy little numbers and then Paige drops in the vocals, reminding me maybe of Cherie Curry or an early incarnation of that Joan Jett class and attitude. You want to know what a Slag Bank is? Go see Voodoo Radio and Paige will tell you all about it! A short set meant there was no Bow Wow Wow cover of c30, C60, C90 Go! Paige had explained earlier that they only had a short set tonight.
I said before “This band have put together some adrenaline pumping quality tunes. A strong set and top live performance from both have cemented them into my list of “must see” bands. How much further can they take this? I think the sky is the limit for Voodoo Radio.” Well since that first meeting, you just have to check out their schedule nowadays, and the bands that they have been playing with. They have had two monster EP’s and take note, they recently supported Sham 69 and tonight back at Concorde2 with Skids. Chatting after the gig they were thrilled to learn they had been given a new gig off the back of their performance tonight.
A really good opening act for tonight. Long live Voodoo Radio. Excited to see what you are doing next.
Voodoo Radio are on Facebook – go on! Give them a like!
Thanks to SKIDS and Voodoo Radio, and the team at the fab Concorde 2. Aslo to the Brighton and Hove news music team.
Words and photos by Ian Bourn.
We work hard with the artists, the venues and the crowd to bring you the best photos and reviews across the area. Keep Music LIVE! Follow us on Twitter and on Facebook.
Please note all original images / video are copyright, please do not copy. If any of the featured artists/promoters/venues want copies of the images – or more if available – please just get in touch.
All original pictures / video – copyright to IANB/MEDIA WORKS/ SCENE SUSSEX – Ian “The Lens” Bourn 2023.
Got an event coming up? Need some gig photography, promo shots, previews or reviews? – please get in touch! See you down the front – come and say “hi!”