Primal Scream, Southampton Guildhall

A HALF-EMPTY venue and a middle-aged audience appeared to suggest that Primal Scream were not as relevant as they’d like to think they are.

Opening the night with the dirge, electro distortion of Kill All Hippies, the band rapidly ploughed through the hits. The set-list featured songs from throughout their vast back catalogue, including Jailbird, Swastika Eyes, Rocks and a smattering of material from recent album Beautiful Future.

Frontman Bobby Gillespie looked as youthful as ever, but didn’t really have any real conviction despite his attempts to come over all rock and roll by turning his back on the audience for one track.

Musically, the Scream sounded tight as a band with new member Barrie Cadogan standing out on lead guitar and gelling well with ex-Stone Roses bassist Mani.

As the night wore on, the small crowd was treated to a giant video wall that bombarded the eyes with flashing images of the Vietnam War and other ‘edgy’ political iconography, but it was all a bit too reminiscent of the brainwashing scene from A Clockwork Orange.

By the encore any other lingering classics were given an outing such as Country Girl, Shoot Speed Kill Light and bizarrely nothing from 1997’s album Vanishing Point.

A slightly routine performance from Primal Scream though they delivered accomplished greatest hits for those whose showed-up.