Fun Lovin' Criminals review: A rich musical heritage to deliver a memorable 90 minute set
PUBLISHED: 14:43 10 February 2019 | UPDATED: 12:51 11 February 2019
Tom Barnes WWW.TOMBARNES.CO
New York’s finest the Fun Lovin’ Criminals mixed the old and the new, the rough with the smooth as they took a packed LCR on a genre-hopping musical journey through their 25-year career.
Charismatic frontman Huey Morgan may have been confined to a red leather easy chair due to a broken foot but he was still ready to rock. Cranking up his guitar, he led the trio in opening number Rumble, the classic Link Wray instrumental.
The band’s latest album Another Mimosa features a selection of their favourite tunes delivered with their distinct blend of soul, funk, jazz and rock, but their own songs have also aged well. The set included tracks from most of their seven albums and an early run of three songs from their acclaimed debut, Come Find Yourself, kicked things up a notch. First up was the soulful King of New York which got the drummer so excited he hurled his sticks into the crowd. This was followed by the silky smooth Smoke ‘Em and punk-fuelled Bombin’ the L.
With each song the band got deeper into the groove drawing on a rich musical heritage to deliver a memorable 90 minute set. Highlights included their lush rendition of Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers’ Mary Jane’s Last Dance and Tarantino-flavoured Scooby Snacks, a rocking follow-up to the mellow Daylight. Barry White Saved My Life from the album 100% Columbian brought the main set to a chilled close.
Multi-instrumentalist Brian Leiser opened a playful encore with a haunting harmonica solo before dropping the twanging riff of theme song The Fun Lovin’ Criminal. Some random swami whistle playing by Brian was followed by the funky closer Big Night Out.
Whether they’re rocking out, playing it cool or just goofing about these musical bandits still know how to have fun and after nearly three decades their fans are still lovin’ it.