Puressence take to the stage to a huge ovation from the packed audience. They consist of three excellent musicians fronted by the kind of charismatic front man that most bands would kill for. James Mudriczki possesses swagger and confidence by the bucket load and uses this to tease and cajole the crowd into increasing levels of adoration. Tonight’s gig also marks the launch of their sixth and latest album ‘Solid State Recital’ and although there has always been quality shot through each of their previous works, this collection of songs heralds a true return to form and of those showcased tonight ‘Majesterial’ and the quite beautiful ‘Cape Of No Hope(Water’s Edge)’ are standout tracks. It has to be said however and with all due respect to more recent releases, that the ‘golden’ period of the first three albums is the source from which the seasoned fans derive the greatest pleasure when they are served up live. Mudriczki pours his heart and soul into each tale of love, loss and emotional turmoil, delivering every line with his outstandingly distinctive vibrato and enough power to rip shards of glass from the mirror-balls that adorn this famous old venue.
In a ninety minute set that never dips in quality the band play as if their very future depends on it and in truth perhaps it does! As they return for their encore the faithful bay for more and they are rewarded with a trio of crowd pleasing favourites – ‘This Feeling’, ‘Walking Dead’ and ‘Sharpen Up The Knives’ closing a blistering set.
The night ends with a mutual display of respect and gratitude and Mudriczki leaves the stage with a wry grin and the words: “Stick with us – we may just make it”. Have a listen – you may just agree!
Review & photos by Shay Rowan