1. Underworld - Alexandra Palace
One of the best gigs of my life. Crowd was 100% up for it but as they were largely in their forties, there was also loads of space to dance. Great lighting, all the hits, Karl Hyde being a consumate front man. I really rate Barbara as an album too so enjoyed hearing those tunes.
2. Justice - Brixton Academy
Only just pipped to the top by Underworld. Justice’s current stage show is probably the best lighting rig and stage production of any gig I have ever been to. Videos really don’t effectively convey the effect of what they’ve set up. The next day my girlfriend told me that she was so overwhelmed by how good the stage was that it made her cry. Played pretty much every song they have and mixed them perfectly, crowd was fucking nuts as well.
3. Perfume Genius - Roundhouse
It helped that the new album is so great. After smashing out a few of the more upbeat numbers he announced he’d be slowing things down at the piano for four songs. Usually this would be my cue to get a pint, but fifteen minutes later I was wiping away a little tear. He commanded the whole stage with his voice and his dance moves. Would say he’s now on the ‘see every time they’re in town’ list.
4. Jenny Hval - Rich Mix
Her and her band came on in crochet guts and face paint and smashed through Blood Bitch with the exact level of theatrics and musicianship you’d expect. Handstands and lying down on the floor were all in the mix, but her incredible voice still really shone through, and in the live setting the noisier electronic parts of the album also came to life in a more pronounced way then they do on the record.
5. Broken Social Scene - Brixton Academy
Won a pair of tickets to this but only knew a couple of songs beforehand and was deathly unwell, but I knew it would be a great surprise for my BSS mad friend. Even though I was coughing and spluttering I was fully onboard after about 3 or 4 songs. Band’s really tight and the depth of sound was amazing. Kevin Drew getting the crowd to do a primal scream was a real highlight.
Primavera - The Arcade Fire secret show was incredible, especially as I only walked in to the small area on a whim about ten minutes earlier and ended up being a couple of metres away. Other highlights were Haim, Death Grips, King Krule, Sampha, Joey Purp, Flying Lotus
Glastonbury - Probably the best Glasto of the 4 I’ve been to. Perfect weather the whole week and great line-up. Really loved Phoenix, Chic, Justice, Solange, Anderson Paak, Future Islands, Bo Ningen, Run the Jewels and ofc Katy Perry. Don’t want to be cliched but there is really nothing else like it.