Barclaycard Arena (? hell, it’s the bloody N.I.A. to me), Birmingham
Extraordinary, really, and not quite as expected. First time to the Indoor Arena without seats and it’s a corker, like a decent N.E.C., as droves of the Faithless faithful arrive, in all ages, sizes, shapes and forms, the atmosphere of a revivalist meeting. The arena so big and roof so high it feels like outside, with party coats laid out on the floor as support band ‘Until the Ribbon Breaks’, no me, neither, came on and did their stuff, a fascinating blend of electronica and beats fuelled folky-blues with occasional trumpet and lots of percussion, electronic and otherwise; largely well-received and one to hear their recorded stuff for clarity, I felt, the sound a bit muddy. Bang on 9 the lights go down, the floor fills and bank upon bank of lasers come up to, sorry, euphoria, the biggest cheers reserved for Maxi Jazz, diminutive and suited, a white T under the jacket. Bravely banging off with signature tune, ‘God is a DJ’, alternating between the quiet rappy bits as it builds inexorably to the chunky bits that sear the room with joy, this seemed » Continue Reading.