The 24-hour party people gathered for a ceremony on Saturday at the Portsmouth Pyramids to celebrate the greatest hits of the Happy Monday’s! Shaun Ryder and co arrived in town as part of their massive 30 date tour with Portsmouth already being the 10th stop, the tour sees the band playing right up until the middle of December.
DJ and producer, Jon DaSilva, brought the Acid House to the Pyramids as the warm up for the Mondays. Jon (if you didn’t know) used to be one of the resident DJs at The Hacienda in the 80’s/early 90’s with Mike Pickering. DaSilva became renowned for his innovative DJ style using sound effects and acapella vocals. DaSilva drew an early crowd to the venue for some pre-gig raving which set the tone nicely.
The opening of the Mondays set starts with an intro from the band with Rowetta entering the stage waving tassels in the air, whilst sporting a Johnny F@*kin Marr t-shirt, a great nod to the Manchester guitar genius. A conversation can be heard over the mic between Ryder and Bez and the two then enter the stage with band going straight into ‘Kinky Afro’ with its classic opening line (I’ll let you look that up if you don’t already know it!).
Rowetta’s vocals are on fine form, none more so than on ‘Loose Fit’ complementing Ryder’s signature style. The chemistry is still there vocally between the two throughout and also with the banter and wit between songs as well. No Mondays gig would be complete without the man, the legend, that is Bez! This man seems to have unlimited energy which sees him parading and bouncing around the stage with his signature style of dancing, maracas in hand, engaging with the crowd as his goes. The set includes the numbers ‘Gods Cop’’, ‘Tart Tart’ and ’24-hour Party People’.
‘Hallelujah’ to the backdrop of lasers, which have been used during the set, complement the sea of arms in the air and the baggy dancing that ensues. It feels like much of the crowd are reliving their youth, although there were a few younger faces in the crowd who have clearly been brought up with the music. There’s only one song that the Mondays could finish the set with and the one that most of the crowd had paid their money to see, ‘Step On’. The opening keyboard riff cues more baggy dancing with beers and phones aloft. The Mondays definitely sent the crowd away with a firm fix of Madchester to see them into the rest of their Saturday night.