Wire The Black Session: Paris, 10 May 2011

WireThe Black Session: Paris, 10 May 2011
The third wave of Wire's career has turned out to be a remarkably productive one. Rather than becoming simply a greatest hits reunion tour, they've actually made some of the best music in their long, influential career. Not only that, but they've become even more formidable onstage, as this live recording in Paris last year shows. The focus is very much on their most recent album, Red Barked Tree, and that brings with it some of the more sedate moments live, such as opener "Adept." That said, they're still more than capable of cranking up the guitars and making the kind of caustic, spiky noise that's been their trademark for more than 30 years, especially live. When they do delve into their extensive back catalogue, numbers like "Kidney Bingos" and "Map Ref. 41ºN 93ºW" sound as wonderful as ever, and the frenetic chaos of "Drill" is a highlight. Then, as a parting shot, "Pink Flag" is stretched out to beyond its breaking point, clocking in at ten minutes, demonstrating that their live shows should be sought out. (Pink Flag)