Skinned for the last time

TONIGHT, Rock City bid a fond farewell to old friends.

The last two years have been a rollercoaster ride for Skin as they came out of retirement to open the main stage at Download festival in 2009 then proceeded to tour and release a new album Breaking the Silence.

The band take to the stage to an enthusiastic crowd and open with I Was Born to Rock n Roll from the new record. They then proceed to tear through old and new songs which equally please the die hard fans - some of whom have followed the band round the UK during this farewell tour.

Lead singer Nev MacDonald commands a voice that most singers would give their right arm for. As he gazes at the crowd he sees familiar faces and thanks the fans who have braved the bad weather to go to every single show.

Tracks such as Look But Don’t Touch and Tower of Strength from their eponymous 1994 debut album bring a sense of nostalgia to proceedings and sound just as good now as ever.

Much like Thunder who called it a day in 2009, Skin epitomise what can be great about British rock bands but sadly cannot compete against flavour of the month bands that soar like a rocket to the top of the charts only to disapear in the blink of an eye.

Although there is a sense of sadness that this will be the last show ever it’s also a celebration of their career and a thank you to the loyal fans that have stayed with the band through thick and thin.

Guitarist Myke Gray looks the ultimate rock star throwing shapes and knocking out solos with a passion that ignites the crowd.

The camaraderie between the band and the audience is clear as well as the mutual affection, grown men shout out “don’t split up “with genuine emotion.

After two encores Skin leave the stage with huge grins and a teasing comment of “never say never”, which I’m sure will leave the fans hopeful of a change of heart.

JANINE COLLINS