Last weekend, James packed out the 9,000 capacity G-Mex venue. It was an amazing feat – they haven’t even had a Top 30 single.
James have been around for years and have probably shifted more schmutter than vinyl – rumours are that they have grossed over £1/2 million in T-shirt sales this year alone.
But the charts should beckon with the new single Lose Control. Singer Tim Booth’s charismatic personality, and the powerful rock music of the seven-piece outfit, have been knocking on the door so long that their bad luck has become a cliche on the city’s scene.
If one Manchester band have the potential to become a stadium rock band on the scale of Simple Minds or U2 it’s James. The fact that they, like other guitar-based bands, haven’t had the success of the Mondays/Inspirals/Roses axis says more about fashion than music.
Other brilliant artists without major chart recognition – Yargo, MC Buzz B and The Railway Children spring to mind – soldier on, confident that tastes will come round to their music.