LIVE – Skunk Anansie @ O2 Academy, Birmingham, UK

Review and Photography by Robert Barrett

25 years is a long lifespan for a band. At this point in careers bands have switched into coasting mode, but not Skunk Anansie. 25 years into the game (27 after the inevitable covid tour delay), they are still a force to be reckoned with and show no signs of slowing down.

As Boris Johnsons “Peppa Pig Land” speech rang out the band burst onto the stage for a rousing version of “Yes its Fucking Political”, an apt mission statement. Skin wore an striking horn ensemble for the first few tracks, she bared her ferocity to the crowd and played a Theremin. Her energy put modern bands to absolute shame.

“Where’s my mosh pit?” she screamed for the track “Because of You”, and after her request there was rarely a let up in moshing from the crowd. “We really appreciate you coming to live music after covid, Brexit, and during a war” said Skin before leading the crowd into a singalong of anthem “Weak”.

As this was a 25th celebration the band belted out tracks from there entire discography. A special emphasis was put on debut album “Paranoid and Sunburnt” with tracks such as “Intellectualise My Blackness and “Little Baby Swastikkka” sounded just as defiant and apt in 2022.

As the band left the stage whilst Foo Fighters “best of You” played over the speakers. In noticed on the official t-shirts the phrase “You can’t choose your family but you can choose your band”. After 25 years in the business, Skunk Anansie have built up a dedicated family of fans that were treated to a family reunion worth the wait.

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