Good dope, good fun.

Given that the last few live tours and festival appearances had been the acoustic mainline shows and a new album where the best material were the slower tracks, it was expected that Spiritualized would serve up a slow and acoustic based show at Connect. With the band due on stage and a massive space sat in the middle of the stage where you may have been expecting a piano was the first indication that this may not have been the case.

The fact that Spaceman and his crew then turned in an electric performance which may well have been the show of the weekend indicates the strength of material and how the element of surprise can work wonders. Connect has the potential to be a really good festival but with slow ticket sales and some bizarre line up additions, it had a sedate pace to it and Saturdays line up was needing a shot in the arm. And if anyone knows about a shot in the arm its Jason Pierce and that's exactly what he delivered.

"Good dope, good fun" was the rallying cry of the set and it was hard not to be left energised by the song from where it came, ‘Lay Back In The Sun.’ Not too many people were risking having a lie down on the grass in front of the stage but that aside, it was definitely a rallying cry for the day ahead. For those not satisfied with that drug reference, ‘She Kissed Me…And It Felt Like A Hit’ was another sign post for those who say that Pierce knows little other than drug imagery. That’s as may be (although it wrong) but when the songs are that good, who really cares. It doesn’t quite the channel the girl group high that its title references but it is an adrenaline fuelled charge from start to finish.

'Come Together' was a nod back to the 'Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating In Space' album which was probably the bands major release and time hasn't diminished its quality. The song has been through a few evolutions in its time and this time the backing vocalists carried a lot of its power but it definitely delivered an embracing number which brought the crowd to life. Recent single ‘Soul On Fire’ was another crowd pleaser and one which fully used the backing vocals and all members. Not as many people seem to be aware of Spiritualized these days but this track would fit in nicely on any of their classic records and indicates the band still have a lot going for them.

If this festival set was an indication of the style of show Spiritualized will be putting on in October for their UK shows, there could be another line of gigs which are looking rather essential. Illness and wavering reviews and record sales may have threatened the demise of the Spaceman but on current showing, he sounds as though he will be with us for a long time yet.