Of the many advantages that came from switching jobs this year was the ability to do things “on a school night”. Other than going for meals out it meant that I was able to see one of my favourite bands as part of the music festival British Summer Time. Considering how my teaching job meant I had to cancel tickets at the last minute to see St. Vincent live and prevented my from seeing Girls Aloud before they disbanded I am out to right every past wrong, which means I got to see Arcade Fire live. I have already gone into my love of their albums as part of my Music Monday series.
As you can see we managed to get quite close to the stage (by we I mean myself and my mum… I have a cool mum and am not afraid who knows it) and what unfolded was one of the best gigs that I have ever been to. It might even be the best gig that I have ever been to, it really has become a toss-up between them and Sufjan Stevens.
The main difference between the two is that with Arcade Fire I was dancing and screaming along to the lyrics for about two hours and with Sufjan things felt more intimate as he regaled us with the stories behind his albums.
The picture here is from, for me, the highlight of the show. When Regine performed ‘Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)’, then again I was pretty much transfixed with her throughout the entire gig whether she was in superhero gear (‘Joan of Arc’), on the platform behind us flanked my dancing skeletons (‘It’s Never Over (Oh Orpheus)’) or on her accordion (‘No Cars Go’).
Looking back on the afternoon/evening it strikes me just how in a class of their own Arcade Fire were, especially when compared to Jake Bugg who played just before them. The whole 2 hours felt utterly euphoric; a feeling helped by a warm evening and a beautiful London sunset. It also re-awoke my love of the band and resulted in Reflektor receiving a lot of iPod play time. What I would give to relive that evening.