The Tubes descended upon Leeds for one of their most intimate UK shows in a long time.
There aren’t many bands who can stand the test of time in this day and age but this year The Tubes are celebrating 40 years together, an achievement not to be sniffed at. The scene is legendary The Brudenell Social Club, the room is packed to capacity and it doesn’t take long for it to get hot and sweaty.
As the band launch into “Getoverture” their fearless leader Fee Waybill took to the stage dressed like an Italian gentleman in top hat and trench coat as he crooned a cover of Frank Sinatra’s “This Town”. The Tubes have always been known for their on stage antics and controversial yet theatrical live shows and tonight is no different. The theme of the show has been inspired by the Film Noir era of Hollywood.
Fee Waybill wheeled out his whole supporting cast of characters including theÂ beer spewing Quey Lewd soaring above the crowd in his platform shoes during the epic “White Punks on Dope”, a prisoner complete with straight jacket during “No Way Out”, a bondage geek for “Mondo Bondage”, a quiz master during “What Do You Want From Life” and the creature from the black lagoon during “Sushi Girl” to name but a few of Fee’s many personalities.
One thing we learned about Fee Waybill tonight was that he is not a fan of “Game of Thrones” as he ranted and raved about the show much to the amusement of the audience. Waybill told the room it was ‘Time to get sexy’ before dedicating the heartfelt ballad “Don’t Wanna Wait” to the late Vince Welnick, which turned the room into a giant singalong. Drummer Prairie Prince got his moment to shine with a sublime drum solo.
Closing the show with a ferocious quartet of numbers including “She’s A Beauty”, “Talk To Ya Later” and rocking covers of The Beatles’ “I Saw Her Standing There”. The band finished their set with Hendrix’s “Third Stone From The Sun” whereby Roger Steen was channeling the great man himself.
Traversing Frank Sinatra to Jimi Hendrix in a single show is quite some feat. The Tubes epitomize rock and roll, they seamlessly infuse art with music and characterize the golden age of the rock show which has been somewhat lost on many contemporary artists, long may they continue.