Opening with ‘Hardbeat’ is a statement of intent which few can muster and it’s thrilling to see that Lenman is still equally at ease sitting atop colossal riffs as he is when toting a banjo with minimalist backing. The question of previous bands’ material is often something of a conundrum for (relatively) newly-solo artists, so it’s welcome to see that Lenman still indulges the demand for Reuben material. Across tonight’s set he manages to squeeze in four offerings from his former outfit, including a reworked acoustic take on ‘Let’s Stop Hanging Out’.
The evening itself closes with a mini-set of Lenman acoustic and it’s in this quieter arrangement where the fan vocals are allowed to truly come into their own. Lenman is not the obvious rock frontman and he never has been. A self-depricating sense of humour has always sat in place of the supposed arrogant veneer and despite his entirely serious view of musicianship, you always get the impression that his tongue never quite leaves his cheek entirely. The fact that he can take his fanbase with him through such diverse sonic offerings speaks volumes about the loyalty that Lenman commands. Long may his eclectic reign continue.