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Madness, Leeds Arena
Graham Clark, Features Writer
It could be 1979 all over again, The Specials have just released a new single this week and Madness are back out on tour,

Dubbed The Sound of Madness tour, the opening sequence shows footage of the Austrian Alps with what looks like a tourist advert for Austria, naturally they even have Julie Andrews in there too. I had expected to see Madness running over the hills!

The hills might not be alive with the sound of music but Leeds Arena certainly was: when you have a back catalogue as strong as the Madness one and you open with One Step Beyond it is destination skasville.

"I remember it like it was yesterday" shares lead singer Suggs, after the band perform a rousing version of The Prince.

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It was not all about nostalgia though as the band played newer tracks such as NW5. Admittedly the newer songs did not have the familiarity of the classics but they were still unmistakably Madness.

Bolstered by a three piece horn section the tracks were given an extra boost. The 7,000 fans present were on good form, it's not often you go to a gig to see many wearing Fez hats.

Saving the best until last it was soon becoming a greatest hits set as House of Fun, Baggy Trousers, Our House and It Must Be Love followed in quick succession proving that good songs never die.

As they encored with Night Boat To Cairo those Fez hats soon came into being and the nuttiest boys around proved that they are still as Mad as ever. For the audience it had been an early Christmas present.

Madness, Leeds Arena, 7th December 2018, 9:18 AM