The Charlatans performing their 30th Anniversary Best Of Tour at Rock City Nottingham on Saturday 14th May 2022.

Images and Review by Kevin Cooper

Anyone with a cursory knowledge of British rock will be aware of The Charlatans’ history and tragedies, but this most durable of bands just keeps on going, as shown at Rock City on Saturday night as they entertained a packed crowd with their 30th Anniversary Best Of Tour.

Rather than kick things off with a bang, the rest of the band took to the stage and subtly lead into the slow drawn out swirling psychedelic march of Forever before front man Tim Burgess stepped on to the stage at the exact moment he was required to supply the vocals.

From there it was hit after hit as band mates guitarist Mark Collins, bassist Martin Blunt and keyboardist Tony Rogers got through more than twenty songs in total. There was an early focus on their 90’s heyday with lesser hits like the throbbing Weirdo which was blended with classics, the funky You’re So Pretty…We’re So Pretty and their first hit The Only One I Know.

There were also some curve balls thrown in such as the snarling Sleepy Little Sunshine and The Blind Swagger which lowered the tempo but kept the crowd’s attention. There was a trio of tracks from their latest album, Different Days, with the title track and the excellent Plastic Machinery both with arms aloft choruses which sandwiched the spoken word Future Tense.

Finishing their main set with the anthemic North Country Boy and the raucous How High, Burgess had spent most of the set taking photos of the crowd taking photos of him.

Having already made reference to the earlier Nottingham Forest win, and wearing a green sweatshirt which the crowd likened to the late Brian Clough’s the encore included the hugely underrated Blackened Blue Eyes, the lesser known Trouble Understanding, before the mandatory Madchester influenced Sproston Green brought an evening of nostalgia to an end.