Review: The Pogues, O2 Academy, Newcastle

Publication: Evening Chronicle

Author: Tom Laidlaw

Date: December 16, 2010

Reviewed gig: Newcastle, O2 Academy – December 14, 2010

Original Location: Link

CHRISTMAS wouldn’t be Christmas without The Pogues!

It’s the festive season and that can mean only one thing – the Pogues are back in Toon.

While the Christmas period seems to get longer and longer each year – supermarkets getting a head start as far back as October – in Pogues-world that is most certainly not the case.

Tuesday night’s gig in Newcastle was cut short, to the annoyance of some.

The reason: the band were late on stage and the O2 Academy has a strict curfew, so fans were not treated to a full show.

OK, it’s Christmas and the season of goodwill, but you pay your ticket money the same as everywhere else so you expect to get your value for money.

You don’t often hear booing at a Pogues gig, but there were quite a few around the auditorium this time around.

Now I have seen this band perform on probably more occasions than I care to admit and part of the attraction is to expect the unexpected.

When the unexpected is a less-than-full-on show, then there is a certain irony involved.

Apart from the lateness, there was something missing throughout this gig to give it that usual Pogues push.

Shane MacGowan wasn’t his usual frontman self, and even Spider didn’t seem to deliver in his usual way.

That said, I still did enjoy the gig. Perhaps I have been spoilt from admiring the Pogues from their glory days.

Of course, Fairytale of New York was left until the end and, it has to be said, this is where the party really started. But ended!

Everyone has their off-nights, but this one was a collective off-night. More’s the pity, for it was my one big Christmas night out of the year! What shall I do next Christmastime? Oh, if the Pogues are back, yes, I’ll probably be drawn back to their show again – it can only get better!

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