MoSolidGold - Manchester Apollo 3.3.01

Manchester's Apollo Theatre is completely sold out for tonight's gig. The mature crowd are either wearing denim (both jeans and jackets incredulously), Fred Perry or Ben Sherman shirts and those oh so trendy bretton caps John Lennon used to wear. I also notice an alarming number of doe eyed couple who probably rarely venture to see band unless the Beautiful South happen to be touring. Real ale drinkers with ever expanding waistlines and unkempt Jim Royle type beards are also in attendance, not to mention the occasional musicians who are revelling enthusiastically that tonight's entertainment is keeping music real.

Supporting, Ocean Colour Scene, Mo Solid Gold are hot on the heals of being given the prestigious single of the week by Mancunian mirth maker Mark & Lard. They're here to warm up the not so young crowd. The musicians in the band are (all former members of These Animal Men) complimented by a singer who fancies himself as a black Tom Jones. He tries but ultimately fails to dance like James Brown and the enigmatic frontman even resorts to some Prince moves. Starting with a rousing instrumental with a retro style 60s hammond organ. They sound very American and have a Motown thing going on. Singer K has one of those deep soul voiced but his range is impressive and his Las Vegas showbiz act which sees him desperately attempting to involve the audience at every possible opportunity.

"David Soul" is a smooth, old-fashioned ballad with faultless backing vocals and new single "Personal Saviour" is also one to watch out for. They are a promising new British band but their material, although energetically performed and well received, lacks variety and originality. As a live act MoSolidGold give 100% and will probably gain a lot of new fans as a result. It can't be easy playing a mere 30 minute set to people who have come to see the headliners but they display true ability and self confidence which is normally associated with well established bands.

Nicholas Paul Godkin