Rain stays away as Stone Roses play


In the absence of the Oxegen music festival in Ireland this month, festival fans are getting their outdoor musical kicks at a series of concerts at Dublin’s Phoenix Park this week with tonight's show by The Stone Roses being the most anticipated.

Some 45,000 people made to their way to the Park on a thankfully dry evening to participate in the Manchester band’s reunion tour. Although they only ever released two albums, their eponymously titled debut album from 1989 is still viewed as one of the best rock albums of all time.

Many fans made a day of it at the Park, arriving in the mid afternoon to get the best viewing point for the night’s main attraction and being entertained by a series of support acts: local act The Minutes, Clash guitarist Mick Jones and reggae band, The Wailers.

Since announcing they were reforming last year after a 15 year break, there has been an unprecedented amount of interest in their comeback shows. For many, The Stone Roses epitomized all that was best about guitar/dance music. As much influenced by

classic 1960’s guitar bands (The Byrds etc) as they were by the dance culture of the late 1980s, the band had an era-defining sound that - over twenty years on - still sounds as fresh and relevant today.

Their debut album may only have been 49 minutes long but each of the eleven tracks is a classic and while their only other album - 1994’s The Second Coming - was a relative disappointment the band were already assured of an iconic status in music history.

From the make-up of the audience in the Phoenix Park tonight it was clear that although many of the crowd wouldn’t have been born when the band released their first album, there were still plenty of forty/fiftysomethings in attendance - an age group that would have grown up with the band.

Confidence in the band’s ability to still deliver the goods was buoyed by reports of their shows in Manchester last week when 225,000 saw them perform over three days. The reviews were bordering on the ecstatic.

This is normally the weekend in the Irish music calendar when Oxegen takes place but with that festival taking a year out for many young rock fans last night was their Oxegen.

Also playing in the Park this weekend are Swedish House Mafia on Saturday night and Snow Patrol on Sunday night. But for all concerned it was the second coming of the Stone Roses tonight that meant — and delivered the most.