Manchester is a happy hunting ground for the Pains of Being Pure at Heart. A couple of years back they played a storming set at the Chorlton Irish Centre, that they still rate as their favourite, and tonight they nail the much larger Sound Control with a blinding performance of pumped up indie-pop with a knowing nod towards the Jesus And Mary Chain in their prime.

Opening with the title track of recent second LP 'Belong' and single 'Say No to Love' POBPAH are effortlessly into their stride, but it is only after the band succumb to requests to turn the volume up that the crowd ignites during the pure pop of 'Heart in Your Heartbreak'. Members of cult Manchester band Help Stamp Out Loneliness lead the moshing as an audience of both teenagers enjoying the delights of C86 style indie for the first time and late 30-somethings re-living their youth seem powerless to remain still.

Despite having the second LP to promote, the set is lifted mainly from their self-titled debut with all but two of its tracks being played tonight. Highlights are everywhere from 'Teenager In Love' to 'Come Saturday', but it is probably the twin sign-off of the wonderful 'Young Adult Friction'and 'Love is Fucking Right' that just about shade things. The former perfectly showcasing the band's ability to belt out a great tune and leap around the stage in a charmingly synchronised fashion. Indeed, bassist Alex Naidus could be a modern day member of the Shadows the way be moves around the stage!

Front-man, Kip Berman returns to perform a slowed down, but equally fine, version of 'Contender', before he is joined by the rest the band for a couple more jaunts down memory lane in the shape of 'The Pains of Being Pure at Heart' and 'Everything With You'.

In impromptu, but ferociously demanded second encore of buzz-saw b-side '103' brings the final curtain down on another classic POBPAH Manchester gig.

Simply fantastic.













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