New Model Army performing at Rock City on Saturday 12th December 2015

Images and Review by Kevin Cooper

New Model Army have been around just as long as last night’s venue, which celebrates its 35th anniversary this week. So it was fitting that a band who plays with such immense energy, enthusiasm and effort was asked to play before a packed Rock City crowd last night and to be part of the celebrations.

Frontman Justin Sullivan, now in his 50’s, is still a charismatic shaman; still singing his humanitarian slogans in poetic lyrics with an independent attitude that saw the United States Immigration Department refuse the band work permits in 1985 because their work had ‘no artistic merit’.

Now 14 studio albums later, that has all changed. With no particular one hit behind them, there is not a particular song that is expected of them, so their set list is always varied. With acoustic numbers in the first half and the full band coming together after the break, they played to a super affectionate and delighted audience.

Starting off on stage with just Sullivan and guitarist Dean White, the title track of their latest album, Between Dog And Wolf was given an airing, quickly followed by Stormclouds. Bassist Ceri Monger with his flaming red hair soon joined the party.

The second set saw them joined on stage by the rest of the band and the whole place started to rock. No Mirror No Shadow followed March In September, whilst One Of The Chosen and Wonderful Way To Go were performed with such an intensity that the hairs on the back of your neck stood up.

Whilst this show didn’t so much as speak to a new generation as preach to the converted, with the ever popular Christian Militia, Family and I Love The World, it was a very happy crowd who headed home into a cold rainy December Night.