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NAZARETH, Black #5
Islington Academy Bar, Thursday 25 August 2005

A re-arranged date and strangely moved to the smaller bar area rather than the main hall of the Academy. A good turn out and my first Nazareth gig – a band I have longed admire but never managed to see live until now.

But first we have the excellent Black #5, whose debut album ‘Last Few Hours’ was one of the debuts of last year. Due to the small stage and large drum kit the vocalist was forced to sing in the crowd – can’t get more intimate than that!

A few songs of the debut were aired including the rifftastic ‘This Petty Trial’ and ‘Down’. A few new numbers as well including one of almost ballad like pace! The set was marred by a broken drum pedal but they soldiered on and certainly impressed a few of the Nazareth fans. I can’t recommend this band highly enough as they have the tunes and talent, they just need that all important lucky break…

Between sets I was amused to hear one punter ask without a hint of irony, ‘Which is the house white wine?’ Rock ‘n’ roll!

Nazareth took to the stage and played a blistering of classic rockers including ‘Razzamanz’, ‘S.O.B’ , ‘Turn On Your Receiver’ and ‘Shanghaied In Shanghi’. But Nazareth also do ballads so well including ‘Hearts Grown Cold’, which saw guitarist Jimmy Murrison take the limelight and of course set closer ‘Love Hurts’.

Encores including ‘This Flight Tonight’ and ‘Broken Down Angel’ – sheer classic rock class. Vocalist Dan McCafferty has lost none of his power and was very at ease between songs cracking jokes, mainly at his own expense.

It’s great that Nazareth can still belt out the classics and long may they continue.

Review: Jason Ritchie

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