One of the most indelible memories of my early years is watching Beth Gibbons and Portishead perform live at the Roseland Theatre in New York, smoking a cigarette, while belting out note perfect renditions of 'Glory Box' et al.
So skip forward ten years, and Portishead are not just content with performing live for the first time in a decade. They are immersed in creating memories for their legions of fans who have flocked to see them. And how they succeed....
Portishead are simply sublime. It doesn't matter whether they are playing material from Dummy, Portishead or their as yet untitled third album, you'd have to be Julian Cope not to be captivated by the imagery, the stage presence and the aura that is Portishead.
So after ten long years (not counting the Bristol tsunami benefit concert), Portishead completed their first full set in nearly a decade. Beth, clearly overcome by the reaction of the audience, jumped down to thank them. Then realising she was a bit short to climb back onstage, she had to seek help from those around her to get back up.
Thanking the crowd once more, she said: "I'm sorry if we played a note wrong or whatever, but thank you so much for being so nice to us."
Needless to say the appreciation was roared back towards her direction. Time has not changed Portishead, but they have evolved into a band so big, so important, that it's nice to see that they haven't become arrogant and pretentious. Maybe they could sit down and have a chat with Julian Cope.
Look out for more photos and a full live review of Day 2 later.......