Celebrating 25 years at the heart of Manchester’s vibrant music scene, the next instalment of the Academy’s year long series of unique commemorative concerts will see the return of a beloved local band for a double helping of shows set to be unlike any they have played before.
On Friday 18 December Chameleonx Vox will revisit the Chameleons’ back catalogue in the form of 1986’s compilation The Fan & The Bellows & Early Recordings, performing the work in its entirety along with additional selected material from the band’s earliest days. Lyricist and vocalist Mark Burgess explains “We’ve been invited to mark this celebration by way of two shows in December. The first will be a performance of the album ‘The Fan And The Bellows‘, a set that included some songs that very rarely if ever have been performed before a wide audience.”
The second night of the residency (Saturday 19 December) finds the band delivering a set made up entirely of fan favourites dubbed P.S Goodbye. Those in attendance will have the opportunity for the first time ever to vote for the songs they love best ahead of the show, this unique gift comes as a farewell gesture of sorts, says Burgess: “The second night will be a Jukebox Jack, allowing the audience to pick three choices of songs they would like to see performed. Manchester shows are always special and as this is likely to be our last Manchester performance for quite some time, we want to make it doubly so. Hope we’ll see some of you there.”
The shows mark a return to Manchester Academy for Chameleons Vox who performed their Home Is Where The Heart Is … 2014 gigs at the venue with their two seminal LPs What Does Anything Mean? Basically and Strange Times taking centre stage on consecutive nights. But Manchester Academy holds deeper memories for Mark Burgess – “The Academy Manchester June 2000 gave me one of the proudest moments I’d ever experienced as lead vocalist and bassist with The Chameleons” he explains. “The massive attendance and rapturous response after ten years away was an unforgettable moment I’ll always cherish. With that in mind I’m chuffed that Chameleons Vox will be part of the Academy’s 25 years anniversary celebration.”
As part of these commemorative shows, fans will also be able to purchase weekend passes for a reduced rate granting access to both shows that will come with a limited edition Chameleons Vox laminate and lanyard. In addition to that those customers buying a weekend ticket will be sent a download link a free download of an exclusive track recorded at last year’s Academy shows. The link will be sent to them with the confirmation of their tickets.
Post punk four-piece The Chameleons formed in Middleton, Greater Manchester in 1981. Fronted by singer and bassist Mark Burgess, the band went on to release six studio albums and an EP, along with many Peel sessions, live records and compilations in a career spanning three decades. With a cult following hooked on their iridescent indie, Burgess has continued performing the material recorded during this time live under the moniker Chameleons Vox to an ever adoring fan base.
Chameleons Vox perform at Manchester Academy on Friday 18 December and Saturday 19 December 2015. Tickets £18 or £34 for a weekend ticket.
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