The Courteeners are arguably like Marmite. Whether from removing the ‘The’ from their name to playing 5 consecutive nights at Manchester Apollo, they’re an unconventional band who turn heads. Whilst many listeners wait for a return to their first album, St Jude, other fans worship their growth unconditionally, failing to find fault or just loving them anyway, something frontman Liam Fray strives for with his latest album, “back again to show that you don’t have to be perfect to be loved and that the lost causes are the ones most worth sticking with.” (Radio X 2016)
Now with their release of 5th album, Mapping the Rendezvous, the Courteeners have announced they will play Old Trafford next May, being their biggest gig to date since their homecoming Heaton Park headliner in June 2015. With all 25,000 tickets selling out in 40 minutes, the show – supported by Blossoms, Bipolar Sunshine and Peace – was compared by Q Magazine to the Stone Roses’ Spike Island or Oasis’ Maine Road, and sparks excitement for an even bigger one.
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Paralleling the announcement of new dates are the unsurprising announcements from hardcore fans, quitting jobs or using student loans to attend every gig possible or collect each piece of memorabilia. And nicely complimenting the lyrics of ‘No-one Will Ever Replace Us’, a track depicting live-music romances in all their claustrophobic but comforting glory, are engaged couple Abby Turner and Pete Richards who have altered the day of their wedding to coincide with the Old Trafford date.
Having bought 67 tickets for their wedding reception guests, the couple decided a categorical bringing forward of the date, by 3 years, abandoning the location of Italy for a sweaty but special field. With £3000 less in their pockets, the ‘That Kiss’ lyrics “it meant nothing / it meant everything / it’s really such a shame it’s so hard to explain” ring true. Their Concrete Love for both each other and their favourite artists means their first dance will be a memorable one, certainly with a few wedding crashers but perhaps with hamstrings on shoulders, as depicted in Fray’s lyrics. The band claim to have “something special” (NME 2016) up their sleeves to congratulate the newlyweds, not needing to question if maybe it’ll be a “moment” because it is sure to be.