Review: Lloyd Cole, The Princess Alexandra Auditorium, Yarm

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The iconic 80s singer Lloyd Cole provided a touch of class for Teesside’s new and equally classy and venue.

After parking in Yarm school car park and walking through an entrance archway I thought I had just walked into a remake of the sci-fi film Close Encounters.

The venue looked like an alien spaceship from the outside, all lit up in all its splendour.

Kidding aside, I was most impressed with this state-of-the-art venue.

Lloyd Cole took to the stage dressed in his ‘80s double denim with just an acoustic guitar and what looked like a cup of tea.

Like most acoustic gigs, the night was pretty serene and laid back.

Even so, the now 57-year-old singer kept everyone’s attention with his exceptional guitar playing and distinctive voice, which hasn’t changed a bit.

Over the course of two one-hour sets he took a stroll through songs from 1983 to 1996, mingling classic Lloyd Cole and the Commotions songs with some of his solo songs from 1990 onwards.

The funniest thing was his deadpan Jack Dee-like humorous one-liners, including when a couple came in late he asked: “Where are you from? I’ve come from America and I got here on time.”

He wheeled out a set of classics, including Lost Weekend, Perfect Skin, Cut Me Down and Brand New Friend, to name but a few.

After a faultless two hours he left to rapturous applause which, even though the lights came on and doors opened, continued until he finally came back on to finish with an encore of Forest Fire.

All in all, a pleasant trip down memory lane was had by all.