UK band James, at their heyday during the 80′s and 90′s, returned to the states Tuesday night to perform at Webster Hall, NYC.  The Mancunians made it big in the 90′s with their infamously-titled hit song “Laid”, which burned the airwaves of not only college radio but also commercial radio and MTV (that certain cable television station that once specialized in music videos).

The night started off with singer Tim Booth hanging in the top floor balcony amidst fans with set opener “Sit Down”.  As the audience turned towards the back to watch Booth precariously maneuver through the crowd, the remaining members were taking their positions on stage.  It made for quite a stunning opening feat.

Gypsy-like in baggy (though not “baggy”) pants, the captivating Booth danced his way through the night with moves that alternated from sensuous undulations to spastic jerks.  The audience ate it all up, shouting “we love you!” throughout the set. It was hard to take one’s eyes off of him.  The crowd participated as they belted out the chorus to “Getting Away With It”, and sang along to “Tell Her I Said So”, as requested by Booth.

James’s set featured some new songs from the latest double CD, The Morning After The Night Before, including “Dust Motes”, “Ten Below”, “It’s Hot”, “Crazy”, and of course included nostalgic favorite, “Laid”.

Opening up for James was British singer/songwriter Ed Harcourt.–Text and photos by Tear-n Tan