To say that MADNESS are national treasures would be an understatement. The Nutty Boys will be pulling into the Motorpoint Arena this December and we can tell you now we expect these to be one of the “must-have” tickets of the year when when they go on sale next Friday.
Incidentally, SQUEEZE are the special guests, more of that shortly.
Madness say THE LADYKILLERS TOUR marks a “sure-to-be triumphant” return to the road after 18 months of being cooped up.
They promise it will be “the Nutty Boys finally getting back to doing what they do best – uniting the people for a right raucous live bash,” with a stream of hits from a back catalogue that includes Our House, One Step Beyond and Baggy Trousers.
Madness are the soundtrack to so many of our lives and they are still as exciting and entertaining a live act today as they ever were. This December the Arena will be filled with so many classic tracks turning it into an early festive party like no other.
I do have a little bit of history with the band, so suggesting you grab a ticket is an easy recommendation. I caught them fairly early in their career at the Dominion in London. Years later I was blessed to introduce the guys onto stage at Princess Anne’s home, Gatcombe Park. I have another story where I bumped into Princess Anne (literally) at the end of the gig as she made her way to see the guys in their marquee, but that’s for another time.
The final time I saw them live was at Radio Two’s Festival in a Day in Hyde Park. I can tell you from that first gig, right through to today Madness entertained us every time. The crowd of eager fans love them, and it’s clear the guys love playing live too.
Like all of us, Madness have had a tough time through lockdown but they punctuated it with the critically acclaimed docu-series Before We Was on BT TV and most recently their livestreamed show The Get Up!, from the London Palladium.
The Get Up! was a one-time-only global livestream scripted by Charlie Higson, the evening featured two sets of classic Madness songs including Our House, One Step Beyond and Baggy Trousers, Comedy, Mike Barson as HRH Queen Elizabeth II and guest appearances by Paul Weller and Roland Gift. The stream also saw Madness premiere three new songs, Cruelest Comedy, If I Go Mad and Baby Burglar giving fans a tantalising glimpse into the treasure trove of future classics still bursting from the evergreen Nutty Boys.
Throughout their incredible career, Madness have had 10 UK top ten albums, 15 top ten singles and have won a multitude of awards including a prestigious Ivor Novello. They’ve performed on the top of Buckingham Palace as part of the Queen’s Jubilee celebrations and set the record for the biggest ever audience for the BBC’s Live New Year’s Eve Broadcast – the most watched TV music event of 2018.
One of our favourite clips features Madness performing the classic song Heatwave, and yes that is Paul Weller joining the guys on stage.
It’s difficult to pick just one song from such a huge catalogue of hits but Our House is one of those you can’t help but singalong too, it feels like it’s been around forever. The original video for which was filmed in Willesden Junction, North London has been restored from the original 1982 16mm film print; this new 4k version brings this iconic video to life. You can watch the new 4K version HERE.
Joining Madness on The Ladykillers arena tour will be very special guests Squeeze, a band who are no strangers to South Wales and regularly sell out on their own tours.
Squeeze formed in 1973, shortly after Chris Difford and Glenn Tilbrook had begun their songwriting partnership. Four years later they recorded their first songs and enjoyed a string of hits, establishing the band as not just a flash in new-wave history, but as an important and vital part of British music. In fact at one time Glenn and Chris were hailed as “the heirs to Lennon and McCartney’s throne”
There were solo careers, more than a few break-ups, and many awards along the way, including an Ivor Novello Award. The guys got back together in 2007 to relaunch Squeeze and have been touring, writing and recording together ever since. We would direct you to their UK album charts successes Cradle To The Grave and The Knowledge.
We did a little calculation and from the days of the original line up, which of course included JOOLS HOLLAND, there have been at least three reincarnations of Squeeze and something like 20 plus members of the band, including PAUL CARRACK. But it’s always Difford and Tilbrook at the heart of it all.
Of course any record collection worth its salt has to have a copy of their Greatest Hits in it, with more classics than we could name here. Cool For Cats, Another Nail in My Heart, Black Coffee In Bed, and for no other reason than it’s my lads favourite Squeeze song, Up The Junction (below).
Over the last few years Squeeze have been touring extensively across the UK, USA and Australia, most recently joining Daryl Hall & John Oates on their North American tour, a highlight being a return to Madison Square Gardens. While spending a safe lockdown in the UK, Glenn and Chris have both been writing and keeping busy with online activity, whilst looking forward to getting back to playing live.
You can keep up with all the Squeeze news right HERE. If you head to their site now you can check out the socially distanced gig they are playing next week at the O2 Arena.
So, it’s going to quite a night when The Ladykillers Tour gets to town. Madness and Squeeze stop off at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff on Monday 13th December. Tickets go on sale next Friday, 21st may at 9:30am HERE. Or you can register on the Madness website for EARLY ACCESS now.