CONCERT REVIEW: The Cult – O2 Academy Glasgow – 22nd October 2019

Photo credit James Edmond

The Cult return to their spiritual city, that’s seen them play most venues over the years during the bands spanning career. The band bring the 30th anniversary celebration of the Sonic Temple album to Glasgow’s O2 Academy.

The support for tonight was Piston, from England, the band are being hotly tipped for the top,  you couldn’t fail to see why with a stunning performance from the off, from the opening chords the band seemed to be on a mission, this was true, as they treated the Glasgow crowd to good old British rock. The in your face front man Rob Angelico gave his all, with some rock classic anthems and stunning guitar riffs, gave the Glasgow crowd a treat, even although it was a week early from Halloween,  well worth checking out at a venue close to you.

The venue was rammed, hot, and ready, waiting for The Cult to take to the stage, the lights dimmed and their idols were ready to bring the Sonic Temple album live to their fans. Ian Astbury took to the stage dressed in black, greeting the crowd with his now famous sunglasses on. The band played through some songs that hadn’t seen the light of day from the initial tour 30 years ago. The band fronted with Ian, co-founder Billy Duffy, Damon Fox on Guitar, Grant Fitzpatrick on bass and the legendary John Tempesta on drums. The 1989 Sonic Temple was the main focus of a rousing set, first up the excellent “Sun King”, stunning vocals from Ian as the band settled in to their surroundings for the evening. This was followed by “Wild Flower” and Automatic Blues”, Ian took time to greet the crowd, stating it was “good to be back in his native home”.

As Ian and Billy delighted the crowd with classics from the album, the crowd in full voice,  turned the heat up in the already hot and sweaty venue, “Sweet Soul Sister”, took the band back to their youth, it was like watching the band back in a hot and sweaty Barrowland on the Love tour all over again. Coming to the end of the album you could see by the stage presence and energy this was a night to remember, a band on top of their game and enjoying every minute of performing to the sold out O2 Academy. The crowd were giving their all back in energy and also with roaring vocals as they rocked the venue from top to bottom. The band didn’t look as if they were going to drop the tempo of the show, going through hits from their 10 studio albums, playing classics, “Rain”, “The Phoenix”, “Spiritwalker” and “Rise”. Billy showing his famous windmill moves, holding his famous Gretsch White Falcon, delighted the Glasgow crowd.

The set was coming to an end, closing with “American Gothic”, “Fire Woman” before an excellent version of “Love Removal Machine” that brought the lights down and gave both the band and the crowd, a few minutes to catch breath from an awesome set, with a perfect celebration of the Sonic Temple album.

As the band returned to the stage, Ian thanked the Glasgow crowd, looking around all corners of the venue, he was making this night personal to him with his Glasgow roots, this was a sort of homecoming show in a way. The band finished off with “King Country Man”, before ending the show with an extended version of “She Sells Sanctuary”, Billy proudly playing his famous riff that had the crowd going wild, Ian covering all areas of the stage taking in every bit of energy and emotion from the crowd. As the night came to a close Billy thanked the crowd, with Ian standing by his mic- stand,  looking into the venue and said in his Glaswegian native tongue “we will see you soon, thank you” and then waved to the crowd along with co-founder Billy Duffy.

What a night of music played to the very highest standards, a delighted sold out O2 Academy, packed to the rafters, had experienced a truly phenomenal rock show.

Review by Karen Edmond  /  Photography by James Edmond