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Udderly Fab-Tastic!

CUD - Manchester International II, NME, 26 October 1991

'I LOVE you!' sings bespectacled spectacle Carl Puttnam, the Mick Hucknall you can trust, "1 luhuahu-u-uuuumhhhve yo-o-o-oul' His cavernous diaphragm quakes, he woos the already-sodden audience with Tom Jones-Ian lungpower and Engelbert-esque melodrama. Truly, we are in an Indie Las Vegas. And the Cud band are glittering.

Outside is the coldest bastard rainy night In Manchester ever. In here, still largely unbeknownst to the music Industry, Cud are happening. Warm your toes on that.

A tangible buzz permeates the air; It's like Carter at the end of last year. Teenage Fanclub this summer, Kingmaker at Reading - yes, that exciting. You come to review a concert by a band, but the sheer swell of the expectant and genned-up crowd knocks you out. These Cud fans know something and, in elitist terms, We about to be taken away from them.

So, the Important question, has The Man got Cud? Hell, no. They're A&M property now, sure, they're suddenly in the overtaking lane, and they can have WHATEVER THEY WANT (Later, Carl will delight In telling ms how A&M spent a week trying to obtain the actual model of a knight an horseback, used by Anglia TV as their logo in the '70s, for the sleeve of 'Oh No Won't Do') - but the power and the possibility haven't made them giddy. It's a tighter four-piece that cook with gas.

This evening, confident. cool. together, swaggering, laughing all the time - no longer will the shorthand cynics be able to write Cud off as udder-achieving amateurs. They're done with merely singing for their supper, nowadays they're playing for their life!

Cud are the actual Idiot Joy Showband, Glam Rock for the'90s. 'Eau Water' opens the set, babbling insanely, stomping, showmanlike, on all yer near-sighted Indie codes. Cud dare to crowd-please, to exaggerate gestures, to clutch their frilly chest. And that Puttnam Voice - not for Carl the insipid, apologetic sniffing of Damon from Blur - when he goes for it he really blows for it! BOOM! BOOM! A resounding success.

A camp 'Roblnson Crusoe', a rousing 'Hey Boots', a charming 'Love In A Hollow Tree', and three now ones, 'Sometimes Rightly Sometimes Wrongly', 'Easy' and 'Pink Flamingo', which la a 'Norwegian Wood' made pulp.

Stage divers crowd the skies, about three balloons bob from head to head, Cart chuckles "Heh heh heh" uncontrollably and tells a punter who's waving his boots In the air during 'Hey Boots' that "It's not about shoes!'

Correct. an album in the New Year, America and The Drummer From Cud will leave cult status way behind him. We need stompalong, unashamed, OTT cabaret entertainment that shakes a log to Third World debt; we need Carl Puttnam In his rubbish beads; we need STARGAZERSII

Simply Cud, honey.

Andrew Collins