Richard Ashcroft @ Carling Academy, 8 May
Worshippers leave with the lyric ""I can't change my mould"" falling from their mouths. Do they wish he hadn't?
Nearly ten years on from The Verve's opus 'Urban Hymns', the ageing shoe-gazing New Labour generation have come to salute one of their era's geniuses. Music Is Power arrives early in the set and is reflective of the atmosphere, an unmoving belief in the healing and communal power of music, though it is The Verve's songs that are treated with an allegiance comparable to a revolutionary movement. History and Lucky Man, in particular, are met with glass-throwing enthusiasm as the masses bellow Ashcroft's words in unison. The lack of vocal support from the audience on his solo efforts is evident: there will always be heated discussion as to the value of Verve records in comparison to Ashcroft's individual output, though no one would doubt his position as a preacher to indie followers. So the worshippers leave with the lyric "I can't change my mould" falling from their mouths. Do they wish he hadn't?