Currently on their 40th anniversary for debut album ‘Pelican West’ which was released in 1982, Haircut 100 was a seminal band epitomising the early 80’s music scene. Hits like ‘Love Plus One’ and ‘Fantastic Day’ are instantly recognisable and easily summon back the halcyon days of the era.

And in a similar fashion to their ageless music, front man Nick Heyward, clearly channelling something akin to Dorian Grey, appears to have hardly aged either. Brandishing the large, warm grin as he always has, the band took the stage at the Cambridge Corn Exchange last week ready to reignite the waiting crowd, taking them on a journey back in time. ‘The energy on this tour is absolutely amazing’ Heywards shouts after singing one of the band’s other hits from the album, ‘Favourite Shirts’ – and the upbeat vibe continued undeterred throughout the set.

Sadly, despite frenzied chart and public success – the band ultimately split due to stress and band differences which then saw Heyward recording solo work that equally enjoyed chart success similar to the band’s. However, no evidence of old wounds exist in the present day as there was clearly real love shared between the rejoined original members.

Haircut 100

Keeping back their most treasured hits until the end, Heyward gave some insights and context to two of the bands biggest songs from the album – the penultimate track of the set, ‘Love Plus One’, and ‘Fantastic Day’, to finish up before being called back for an encore which included the 12-inch versions of the same final two songs to send everyone riding out on the highest wave.

The enduring charm, energy and distinctive sounds of the band still capture all the right feels and brings something that can seemingly sometimes be in short supply these days – unfettered joy. That was my takeaway from the night and honestly, I was all the better for it!

Dana Miller