On an otherwise dull, hot Tuesday night, hundreds of people crowded the House of Blues to hear the hard rock/blues mash up only The Cult knows how to deliver so well. As the minutes ticked on, the crowd cheered for the band until finally their prayers were answered in the form of “Wild Flower” the opening track from their third album “Electric.” As they have been doing with this tour, they played the entire album, minus their cover of “Born to Be Wild” only to be replaced with “Zap City” from their newest collection “Electric Peace.”
They flowed seamlessly from one track to the next with small breaks for Ian Astbury to address the crowd. While the audience loved every minute of the set there were certain moments when the place exploded, such as when the opening riff to “Love Removal Machine” rang throughout the venue. Everyone from those who were there when the track was first released to those who recently discovered the band sang the song from start to finish. After the smooth and sleek “Memphis Hip Shake,” there was a short interlude before their second set began which was filled with some of their best material, both new and old.
Though the set was plagued with some feedback issues, the band was still in good spirits as they gave a passionate and lively performance of songs like, “Rain,” “Lucifer,” “Sweet Soul Sister,” which the crowd gladly sang along to, “For the Animals,” and the fan favorite “She Sells Sanctuary.” Ian pulled off his soulful and powerful vocals with ease, while Billy Duffy, Chris Wyse, and John Tempesta delivered the music even better than originally remembered. Ian even brought out some of his memorable dance moves during certain numbers. He’s also one mean tambourine player as he showed off in a number of songs.
Never the shy one, Ian gladly bantered with the crowd, whether it was about the next song, the city of Chicago, or just a commentary on how the crowd was a “sausage fest.” But one of the highlights of the night is when he began strutting around like Mick Jagger before calling him “a prick,” which got everyone hooting and hollering. He then went on to call both Robert Plant and David Bowie gentlemen, while calling Eric Clapton “a douchebag,” which got even more cheers from the crowd. He did give praise to Pete Townshend who he called ” a god.” This just shows that Ian is never afraid to be honest and say what’s on his mind.
For the encore, they did “Nirvana” from their 1985 “Love” album at the request of Duffy, which wasn’t originally on the set list. During this time they also did “Spiritwalker” and closed the evening with an extended version of “Sun King,” which included lyrics from “The Changeling” by The Doors. Though everyone was screaming and begging for another song, the band waved and walked off stage leaving the crowd hungry for more, which is exactly what they wanted. After the show, people of varying ages left the venue, but the look of amazement in their eyes told you they just saw a band they loved either for the first time or for the tenth, proving that The Cult always delivers a memorable show.
You can still catch The Cult on their Electric 13 tour, where they’ll be stopping by Houston, Texas next on August 30th. To see where they’re headed and to purchase their newly released compilation “Electric Peace,” which features their third album along with their album “Peace,” visit their official website.
King Contrary Man
Love Removal Machine
Memphis Hip Shake
Honey From a Knife
Sweet Soul Sister
For the Animals
She Sells Sanctuary