Johnny Marr - East Village Arts Club, Liverpool

Johnny Marr played Liverpool's East Village Art's Club last week. A venue intimate enough for him to project his new album Playland to and big enough to warm up for his Teenage Cancer Trust gig.

With no support act, Marr left the crowd to stand around for a few hours eagerly waiting his arrival. This gave us time to chat about Morrissey and Marr and the release of The Smiths guitarist's 2016 book release. The backing music went down, "Johnny, Johnny, Johnny fucking Marr" was shouted from the rowdy bunch of lads stood behind me and on he came in a velvet jacket and red shirt.

With a mixture of his own songs and a few Smiths' ones too, there was no doubt about which ones went down better. The crowd erupted when Panic began, the crowd exploding with excitement at only the second song.

But can he sing like Moz? Nobody can, but he gives it a bloody good go and the crowd sings it back to him louder each time. Johnny gives it his best shot, you couldn't fault him. Guitar-wise, he brought heavy riffs and a lean into the crowd with each solo, a master at work. 

Although the crowd sang louder than Marr with songs like Bigmouth Strikes Again and Generate! Generate! They didn't show their appreciation with any movement, a sway was the most it got to, as if the crowd were passive, observing and enjoying the music like it was on TV and not being played live in front of their eyes, a disappointment to an otherwise fantastic gig.

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