South - Night & Day - 13.3.01

If you ever needed prove of what the Roses left behind you need look no further than South. A collision of gently strummed guitars and dance beats with lush Ian Brown styled vocals. Now for the kids of Manchester this is no strange happening, a week can't go by without another Roses copy act, but for a band to make the big time and actually come from down South (Ed: no pun intended) just goes to show how many people the band actually touched. Tonight in Manchester it seems strangely appropriate. In fact it almost seems like were back in 1989 with Stella (Intastella), Derek "Dad Of Shaun" Ryder and the Alpinestars in the house.

South might actually be the first Mowax band to rise above just being another Mowax act. It happens with all the great labels that the acts of infinitely smaller than the actually label - just look at Twisted Nerve (with the exception of Badly Drawn Boy) or Creation (with the exception of Oasis). The real worry is will tonight's gig be able to recreate the intricate detail of the forthcoming album "From Here On In" and sadly all our worst fears are realized. Its a classic case of "if we can't recreate it just knock it around a bit and we'll call it primal rock & roll".

Everything that made the long player special is lost amongst what at times is nothing short of a dirge. Classic tracks like "Paint The Silence" and "All In For Nothing" merely crawl along when they should fly. The sad thing is that while the band may be using this short tour as a change to hone their live sound there will be paying punters who walk away short-changed. Lets just hope that next time round they hit the spot - I know they've got it in them, anybody who has heard the album knows it - just lets hope they find that soul.

Alex McCann