Proclaimers delight full house crowd at Ipswich Regent on new tour

Craig and Charlie Reid, The Proclaimers. Seen here in studio shoot in Leith in 2018. Edinburgh, Scot

Craig and Charlie Reid, The Proclaimers. Seen here in studio shoot in Leith in 2018. Edinburgh, Scotland, UK. Picture: Murdo MacLeod. - Credit: Murdo MacLeod

The Proclaimers at Ipswich Regent on Thursday night.

Charlie and Craig Reid have been delighting audiences across Britain with their fantastic work for more than three decades now, but it still sounds as fresh and as distinctive as it did when they made their breakthrough in the mid-1980s.

They may play all over the world, but their message is still firmly rooted in their home country. Their’s is the voice of the Scottish industrial lowlands.

Specifically the Lothians around the capital Edinburgh – a part of the world that suffered during the recession of the 1980s but has re-asserted itself as one of the most confident areas in the whole UK as Scotland itself has found a new voice.

While their fellow Scots band Runrig became the voice of the Highlands, The Proclaimers have been the voice of industrial Scotland – and they’re still at the cutting edge as anyone who has heard their new album, Angry Cyclist, will testify.

Their current tour is, of course, promoting this album and their set started with the title track – telling the audience that they’re still bang on form – before going through several more tracks from it. The Battle of the Booze is a particularly emotional track as you may have guessed.

But an early appearance by “Letter from America” heralded the arrival of more familiar material.

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The audience loved it, of course and the band then carried on through their songbook stretching back to to the 1980s.

The Proclaimers’s back catalogue is a mixture of biting political satire wrapped up in accessible music and some of the finest love songs ever written.

“Life with you” is possibly the best pop love song written this century. It’s also the title track to (arguably) the best album they have produced so far. It brought the house down!

And there was a special emphasis on the “Sunshine on Leith” album in this concert. I have to admit I don’t think that is their greatest track – but their performance of it this time was superb. I may have to revise my opinion.

The Proclaimers are wonderful live. Their music is a wonderful accompaniment to a car journey. Now where is my Blu-Ray of the movie “Sunshine on Leith?” I’d walk 500 miles to see that again (well 500 yards anyway!).

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