A QUICK glance around the bar at the Brighton Dome gives away just how long it is since the Happy Mondays first burst onto the music scene.

This latest tour marks 30 years since the Manchester band’s superbly named first album Squirrel and G-Man Twenty Four Four Party People Plastic Face Carnt Smile (White Out) and as a result their fanbase is almost exclusively in the middle-aged bracket.

I love the Mondays but I did have a nagging concern that seeing them three decades after their heyday might prove a disappointment. It did not take long for any concerns to be blown away, however.

In fact a few chords into their no-holds-barred opening with Loose Fit and I was transported back to my teenage years again.

The Mondays are in their fourth reincarnation having reformed in 2012 and are only missing keyboard player Paul Davis from their original line-up.

Amazingly, considering their huge success in the late 80s and 90s, the Mondays only had two top ten singles and never hit top spot in either the singles or album charts in the UK.

Despite that they retain a cult following and the cheer when Shaun Ryder announced the next song would be Kinky Afro underlined that fact.

More crowd-pleasers followed, mixed with a few of their lesser known songs which were accompanied by the unmistakeable sight of Bez dancing in his inimitable style and shaking his maracas at the front of the stage. Ryder and the Mondays may have mellowed somewhat over the years but there is no doubt they still know how to put on a show.

This was a brilliant, nostalgic joy-ride from start to finish with the icing on the cake being the closing rendition of Step On which was simply sensational.

Call the cops!

David Harper