LIVE REVIEW: MILES KANE - MANCHESTER ACADEMY - 23/11/18

Kicking off the first of two shows at Manchester Academy, Miles Kane started with a sold-out gig on Friday.


Prior to the gig, he played a free set at Manchester’s Fred Perry store, having recently collaborated with the brand this was part of a string of in store shows coinciding with the tour. Those lucky enough to gain admission were treated to 4 acoustic songs, including ‘Standing Next To Me’, a Last Shadow Puppets track.


The tour, which sees Miles playing a lot of similar venues to previous tours, is in support of his third studio album Coup De Grace. After a five-year break from his solo career, Miles Kane is back with this high-level energy record, and I personally couldn’t wait to see these songs performed live.


Miles bounced onto the stage with genuine excitement, accompanied by his new band and a whole new level of energy, we soon knew we were in for an evening to remember. Tackling a bit of friendly crowd banter, he laughed and joked before going into lead single from Coup De Grace ‘Loaded’. ‘Inhaler’ followed, which set the crowd up for the rest of the show.


The set was a perfect mix of old and new, fan favourites, a new song and even an unexpected cover. Every single song was a belter, presented with confidence and charm. Miles Kane’s performance is engaging and charismatic, with the audience fully fixated on the show, which involved an array of colourful lights and ‘Coup De Grace’ in bold lights behind. The stage set-up consisted of floor length silver foil curtains that were complimented by the venues disco ball hanging centre stage from the roof, all of which were a festive touch.


Miles is the ultimate frontman, there’s no denying that, but it wasn’t until new single ‘LA Five Four (309)’ that we got a first-hand taste of that. Channelling The Fall influences, this song took the already alluring performance to a new level. Ever since seeing TLSP cover The Fall - Totally Wired, which sees Miles heavy on the vocals, I’ve been waiting to hear a fresh song so heavily influenced by the band, and here it is. Miles drops the guitar for this single, and replaces it with a huge lively stage presence.

New album track ‘Wrong Side of Life’, ‘Better Than That’ and early single ‘Rearrange’ were followed by a surprising cover. Teasing a recognisable riff, with everyone now singing along, no one was expecting what happened next. A ‘Hot Stuff’ by Donna Summer cover, who’d have thought it? But it was bloody brilliant and probably the ballsiest cover of a 70s classic you’ll ever hear. Barely leaving time to register what just happened, album titled track ‘Coup De Grace’ came next, which was a flawless follow up.


‘Don’t Forget Who You Are’ was a real highlight, chorus “la la la, la la la la la la” still sounded through the crowd as the band left the stage. A couple of minutes later the the band appeared back on stage for a two-song encore, ‘Colour of the Trap’ and of course, ‘Come Closer’. The final song was appreciated by everyone in the venue, repeating the chorus whilst the crowd sang it back, over and over. A real sense of unity was felt amongst the room.


It’s been five years since I last saw a Miles Kane headline tour, in fact it’s been five years since he’s done one. Sure, there’s been festival appearances and TLSP shows, but five years has been a long wait. Miles Kane is back, let’s hope he doesn’t leave it so long next time!


This is Miles Kane at his very best. Don’t forget who you are.


Words and photography by Abbie Jennings for WTHB

Full review can be found HERE

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