WOW TALES: The Mission (UK) with Nuovo Testamento

Sunday, May 5, 2024

The Mission (UK), opener: Nuovo Testamento

 

What a special night this was — some absolute music legends graced our stage, and the staff were wowed by an absolutely incredible opener. We spent weeks trying to educate the Eugene audience about the icons that are The Mission (UK), but sadly we didn’t get the crowd we had hoped for this show. The band didn’t seem to mind, and for those who were present they were treated to one of my favorite shows of 2024.

As would be expected for welcoming one of the true icons of 80s/90s goth rock, there was plenty of black outfits and brooding amongst our audience, but also a lot of joy to have such a legendary group come to Eugene. We don’t often get a full-sized tour bus and trailer parked in the WOW Hall back lot, but thankfully we managed to find a way to squeeze everything in for the show.

Opening the night was quite possibly the most pleasant surprise we have had all year: Nuovo Testamento. WOW Hall staff could be heard in the office during and after their set raving about the group, with statements like “this opening act is unbelievable,” “I know, they are SOOO good!,” and simply put, “…wow.” I can confirm that multiple Nuovo Testamento shirts were bought by WOW Hall staff afterwards, so kudos to this group for making our staff into fans; considering the sheer volume of live performances we take in it’s hard to make US say ‘WOW’ but this trio sure accomplished that.

The group is an Italian three-piece with a stand-up drummer playing a large electric set and a synth keyboardist, while Los Angeles-based vocalist Chelsea Crowley floats all over the stage with boundless enthusiasm as her Italian counterparts play retro throwback 80s pop with a modern motif and a ton of upbeat energy to their vibes — the best comparison would be if an overtly positive modern indie pop group like Misterwives had come out in 1984. I can’t recommend them enough if you’re a fan of 80s music or modern indie pop. We don’t like to play favorites at the WOW Hall…but I’m not the only one in the office who can say that Nuovo Testamento are now a personal favorite. I especially loved their song “Heartbeat,” and highly recommend checking out the music video for it on YouTube. I cannot stress enough how amazing this Italian retro, 80s throwback, whatever-you-wanna-call-’em trio were, but you are missing out if you don’t dig at least a little into their catalog.

Coming down off that high was a fantastic set by The Mission. The band owned the stage and showed genuine appreciation for those that had come out. They ran through their hits while frontman Wayne Hussy provided plenty of stories from a lengthy career on the road. The band was formed when Wayne and bassist Craig Adams left The Sisters of Mercy — an equally iconic goth-rock band from that era, and branched out on their own musical path. The Mission (UK) ended with a reverent chant-along extended performance of their 1990 classic “Deliverance,” the band walking off the stage with only the bass player and drummer left on stage carrying the tune with a soft backing vocal repeating “give me, give me, give me, deliverance…brothers…sisters…” Oh, so so good. If you don’t know the song, check it out here on YouTube — you’re welcome.

 

 

The band quickly returned to the stage for a few more songs, but “Deliverance” was far and away the great highlight of the evening from the Mission, with seemingly the whole crowd joining in on the vocals for the ending.

Frontman Wayne Hussey had an incredible stage presence, clearly earned from who knows how many performances since the 80s to present day, while guitarist Simon Hankler had this quiet cool smirk on the side of the stage with a large hat and sunglasses and a blue light on him all performance that gave him an almost ghost-like aura…you’ll see what I mean in the photos below. In addition to the typical merch, Wayne was also selling his autobiography, and I’m kicking myself for not picking it up to learn of all the amazing stories it must hold from a lifetime in music. I’ve long been a passive fan of the goth-rock genre and knew enough of the band to scrape by on general knowledge of their back-catalog, but their performance converted me as a fan; plus we discovered new favorites Nuovo Testamento, so this night was a rousing success in fulfilling our creative, artistic needs.

Thank you to all who joined us for this phenomenal show, and a special thank you to Nuovo Testamento and The Mission (UK) for such fantastic performances. See for yourself in some photos and a video highlight below.

 

-Kurt

WOW Hall Marketing Director

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