The Men They Couldn’t Hang: Manchester Academy

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Veteran folk-punks The Men They Couldn’t Hang gave another powerful and riotous live show before their devoted army of north west followers, Paul Snowdon checked ’em out…


It’s now more than two decades since they made their first recordings, finding an early convert in late lamented DJ John Peel.
The Men’s take on Eric Bogle‘s The Green Fields Of France (No Man’s Land), was Peel’s third-favourite song in his 1984 Festive 50 and the Manchester concert featured another emotion-charged version of the great anti-war anthem.
Another Peel favourite, Ironmasters, also made it onto a playlist of which highlights were legion – Rosettes, Bounty Hunter and The Colours had the mosh-pitters in full flow while it was also good to hear Paul Simmonds‘ superbly crafted Billy Morgan in the set.
In his solo set, Swill gave another flawless rendition of Barrett’s Privateers while Cush was on top form with his cracks at Chuck Berry‘s 1965 classic Promised Land and Johnny Cash‘s Folsom Prison Blues with the lyrics amended to take a swipe at the Metropolitan Police’s handling of the killing of Jean Charles de Menezes.
Going Back To Coventry rounded off the night which began in some style – Swill actually sold me my new tour T-shirt and newly-published book of Paul’s lyrics – see, The Men are never too aloof from meeting their fans – even working on the merchandise stall.

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