METRO THEATRE, SYDNEY
If there’s any one thing you have to give Spiritualized credit for, it’s their outstanding musical ability, and this gig from the Metro is a prime example of why they have held on to such a loyal and devoted worldwide fan base for so long.
Over the last two decades, Spirtualized have created some of the most epic and hypnotic music the world has ever seen. Singer/guitarist and philosophical pulse of the band Jason Pierce was previously a member of infamous trance-rock outfit Spacemen 3, a group that gained cult status thanks to their credo of “taking drugs to make music to take drugs to”, but growing tension between Pierce and fellow foundign member Pete Kember eventually fractured the group. Although it would be another year before the official demise of Spacemen 3, Pierce and guitarist Mark Refoy, bassist Will Carruthers and drummer Jonny Mattock formed Spiritualized and released their first single, a cover of The Troggs’ ‘Anyway That You Want Me’ in 1990.
In 1992, Spiritualized released their debut album ‘Lazer Guided Melodies’, and had been joined by Pierce’s girlfriend, Kate Radley, on keyboards. The album was heavy on guitar effects and featured the epic, gospel-influenced number ‘Shine A Light‘. “The whole thing is meant to be listened to in one take,” Pierce told Drop-d during a 1997 interview. “When you’re sitting around playing music at home it takes too much effort to keep dropping the needle in on the tracks you like. I only ever knew people who’d play the whole side of an album.”
1997 saw the release of conceptual masterpiece ‘Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating In Space‘, an ambitious album reminiscent of Phil Spector’s wall-of-sound that was inspired by the dark days of heartbreak and depression Pierce suffered around the time Radley secretly married the Verve frontman, Richard Ashcroft, although Pierce famously denies any links between the album and his feeling towards Radley.
2008′s ‘Songs In A&E’, was released after Pierce suffered a near fatal dose of double-pneumonia, but survived after spending a month on his deathbed. Spiritualized have since returned with seventh studio album ‘Sweet Heart Sweet Light’ and are currently touring worldwide.