By Oisin Feeney
On Friday night last, Derry legends The Undertones, took to the Millennium Forum stage alongside support act TOUTS for their eight show of the 40th anniversary tour.
The gig began to quickly fill up from the get go with many members of the audience eager to hear TOUTS and wanting to understand the hype which has been surrounding the local band. What could arguably be the young trios biggest gig to date went down flawlessly as they displayed their adolescent talent and performed some new songs that are predicted to be on the forthcoming EP, such as Mickey, Political People and Marty.
Among the crowd stood many of the bands already established fans, who were feeling the music and moshing about so much that security had to intervene more than once! Also in the crowd were many older faces who were blown away by the talent and energy of these young men. Although they played a very powerful set, towards the end, during their vigorous cover of ‘Gloria,’ the band became rather emotional as they broke the news it was to be last ever time that they would be performing with bassist Miceál Sammon. The many fans and friends of the band gave him a good send off as they all went crazy during the end of the song which finished with chants of his name. A very talented man who will be missed by both the band and also the fans.
As TOUTS finished and the floor became fully packed, an energy filled the room as the crowd waited in anticipation for the Punk legends to take to the stage. “It’s great to be back home in Derry” they said before blasting straight into ‘Jimmy Jimmy’ which sent the crowd into a frenzy of dancing and singing.
At first the crowd seemed to be segregated, with the young fans up at the front jumping around and having a blast, while the older original fans of the band were holding back but obviously looking on with a sense of pride that Punk still lives on in this young rowdy generation.
The Undertones sounded absolutely amazing in this very unusual ‘Punk’ venue with Paul McLoone owning the stage with his flamboyant presence and his powerful voice. As the night went on it was evident that the band still love what they do, as each member had a smile on their face and between songs were joking with both the crowd and each other.
The youth continued to bounce but when ‘Here Comes the Summer’ was played, the older punks and skinheads couldn’t resist any longer and joined in on the madness. Security accepted that they had no power at this point and the whole floor erupted into dancing, jumping, singing and laughter. It even brought an acknowledgement from bassist Micheal Bradley who joked ‘I hope there is no horseplay going on out there,’ before launching into the next song.
The crowd erupted during ‘Teenage Kicks’ which was introduced with a short speech about Terri Hooley and the entire place was electric and bouncing. During the encore the hit song was revisited and played once more before the band thanked the crowd and took off. Once again, The Undertones did not disappoint.
Their next stop is The Garage in Aberdeen where they will continue on their tour 40th anniversary tour.
Photos by Oisin Feeney