Gig review: Paul Weller at First Direct Arena, Leeds

Paul Weller
Paul Weller
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‘I’m Where I Should Be’ is a statement of intent from the Modfather. This was his opening track from his storming two-hour setlist at the Leeds First Direct Arena.

Was it a message to say this is where I am now, or was it a platform to take you on a journey through five decades of Mod infused classics? The latter, I think.

Dressed in a sharp grey suit jacket, and his distinguished silver locks, rocking to the beat, he kept the large crowd moving to the sound of his guitar riffs.

With Steve Cradock, it is a fantastic marriage, that creates an amazing guitar sound.

His latest album ‘Saturns Pattern’ formed a base for his latest tunes, with ‘Long Time’ and the barn-storming ‘White Sky’ setting the pace.

‘Peacock Suit’, ‘The Changing Man’ and the roaring ‘From the Floorboards Up’ played from his back catalogue.

The Style Council era highlight came in the form of the mellow ‘Have you Ever Had It Blue’. But the real old school Weller fans want to hear The Jam.

In previous times I have seen him, he has steered well clear of his nostalgic past. On this occasion however it was different.

He indulged the enthusiastic crowd to ‘Start’ and a very rare treat came in the form of ‘Ghosts’ – one for the Jam purists.

The only way to finish on the second encore was with ‘Town Called Malice’ which sent home everyone home very happy indeed, including myself.