Following an impressive fight through the crowded lines to enter the Opera House you couldn’t help but think it was worth it upon hearing Martina Topley Bird playing her sweet rhythmic organ music. As if she was evoking spirits past she took the sting out of mid-strength Coopers and weak scotch.
At the end of her set she left us wanting more, her use of fresh sampling and impressive guitar playing almost lingering in the air. Little did we know she would impress us another handful of times as a guest vocalist for the main act, after an outfit change into a silver dress and orange neon shoes that caused wolf whistles from around the stage.
After being caught unaware at the bar for the beginning of the set I can tell you that even the staff there were getting their bop on to the blue smokey lights and thumping beats that announced 3D and G’s arrival. All thoughts of Massive Attack having issues in the past quickly faded away with the beginnings of a set that will be revered for years to come.
The light show backdrop would prove a major part of the show, with the poignant political views of the band being shown along with amazing visuals, the giant eyes behind ‘Teardrop’ being one of this reviewers favourites. Martina let loose her vocals to easily their most accessible track.
The band’s duel percussion sections gave the set a complete sound while the distorted rock sound of the guitars gave it a completely rounded feeling, with the completely open air stage filling with a rolling sound.
Long time Massive Attack collaborator Horace Andy was to join the band a couple of times during the set, most notably during the third encore with ‘Karma Coma’ rounding off the amazing music of the night, his unique reggae voice complementing the political message of the band perfectly.
After all was said and done, the overall message of the night was a political one. The crowd was left to think about the momentary messages flashed at them, intended to highlight the crisis our planet currently faces.
Massive Attack left us all thinking it’s time for a change.