Best of 2008: Live

By on Tuesday, 30th December 2008 at 10:22 am

Idlewild @ ULU - 3rd July 2008

10. Idlewild at London’s ULU (3rd July)
First time catching the indie rockers, blown away. So much so that I caught them again in Bristol just a month later, they were that good. They showed just how they’ve managed to be so successful for the past decade, with energy and great songs.

9. I’m From Barcelona at London Scala (25th November)
I know I said I’d write a review and then didn’t, but things were kinda hectic with university stuff at the time. Still, I’m From Barcelona provided one of the best nights of entertainment I’ve had in a while – chaotic, crazy, they had so much energy I was finding bits of ticker tape for days after.

8. Bloc Party at London’s Apple Store (10th October)
My second Bloc Party experience of the year, hot and sweaty in the Apple Store. I was expecting a bland, boring performance but we got anything but – chaotic, Kele was on top form, crawling over the crowd, standing all over the place. I’d hate to have had the job of cleaning up the next morning!

7. Friendly Fires at Oxford Zodiac (5th October)
My second time seeing Friendly Fires, they were even more intense than the first time. Loud, energetic, and slightly chaotic – we forgot it was Sunday night and danced like it was 3am. Just immense. Watch them become huge in 209.

Stars @ Koko (small)6. Stars at London Koko (29th January)
At the time I was quite non-plussed about seeing Stars. However, as the set progressed I realised that they were amazing, and their tunes took on a whole new meaning for me. Though the tunes were dark at times, they were undoubtably a highlight of my year.

5. Subways at London Hammersmith Working Men’s Club (14th May – reviewed by a friend)
Imagine walking into a village hall in west London, finding beanbags and catching an acoustic set from Subways on the eve of their second album release. Yes, it was a bit out of their normal comfort zone, and took a while to get into their stride, but my God were they good come the end of the set.

Tom McRae @ The Hotel Cafe tour in London at KCLSU4. Tom McRae and the artists of the Hotel Cafe (30th April)
I’d caught Tom McRae and the Hotel Cafe tour before, and this resulted in me going to see it again – Tom basically brings over some of the best of US talent, and they go on tour. It’s amazing, and anything can happen – as shown in London when there were special guests Turin Brakes and a mass sing-along mid-audience.

3. Ben Folds at Bristol Academy (13th July)
You know when you see Ben Folds you’re going to get an amazing show, and Bristol was no different – a mass sing-along to Not The Same was a personal highlight, as was his jokes about Wales and the new album. Immense, and I’ll be going back to see him in May when he comes back to the UK.

2. Hydro Connect (29th – 31st August)
You’re probably sick to death of me going on about the amazingness of Hydro Connect. Simply amazing. My first festival, and it didn’t disappoint, with the likes of Bloc Party, Glasvegas, Manic Street Preachers, Kasabian, Ladytron and more.

1. Delays at Camden’s Lock Tavern (30th March)
Sunday Afternoon. A North London pub, and Delays take to the stage. The place is rammed, balloons and marker pens galore, and quite possibly one of the most enjoyable hour of 2008. new songs, and more covers than you can shake a stick at, this may not have the critics weak at their knees, but it certainly gave us the best feeling that remained for much of the week after the gig.

These gigs were picked from the 41 gigs I attended this year, full list below:

Air Traffic @  @ London Koko Tuesday 22nd January
Palladium @  @ Oxford Zodiac Monday 28th January
Stars  @ London Koko Tuesday 29th January
Plain White T’s  @ London Shepherds Bush Empire Wednesday 30th January
Parka  @ London Borderline Tuesday 5th February
Delays @ Bristol Louisiana Friday 15th February
Tegan and Sara  @ London Koko Wednesday 5th March
Delays  @ Oxford Zodiac Tuesday 11th March
Delays  @ London Camden Barfly Wednesday 12th March
Delays  @ London Soho Revue Bar Tuesday 25th March
Delays  @ London Camden Lock Tavern Sunday 30th March
Delays  @ London Blue Flowers @ King George IV Chiswick Sunday 6th April
Kooks @ Swindon Oasis Leisure Centre Wednesday 23rd April
Tom McRae + The Artists of Hotel Cafe  @ London KCLSU Wednesday 30th April
Royworld  @ Oxford Zodiac Sunday 4th May
Wombats  @ Oxford Academy Tuesday 6th May
Subways  @ London Hammersmith Working Mens Club Wednesday 14th May
Delays  @ London Koko Friday 16th May
Delays @ Southampton Guildhall Saturday 17th May
Parka @ Southend Chinnerys Sunday 22nd June
Franz Ferdinand @ Bristol Thekla Tuesday 24th June
Queen, Razorlight etc – 46664  @ London Hyde Park Friday 27th June
Idlewild  @ London ULU Thursday 3rd July
McFly  @ London Shepherds Bush Empire Thursday 10th July
Ben Folds @ Bristol Academy Sunday 13th July
Death Cab for Cutie @ London Koko Monday 14th July
Ben and Jerry’s Summer Sundae @ Clapham Common Saturday 26th July
Red Light Company  @ London Camden Barfly Monday 11th August
Idlewild @ Bristol Fleece Saturday 16th August
Ra Ra Riot  @ London Water Rats Wednesday 27th August
Hydro Connect @  Inverary Castle Friday – Sunday 29th-31st August
Longview  @ London Hoxton Bar and Grill Tuesday 16th September
Friendly Fires  @ Oxford Zodiac Sunday 5th October
Bloc Party   @ London Apple Store Friday 10th October
Team WaterPolo  @ Oxford Zodiac Sunday 12th October
M83  @ London Scala Wednesday 22nd October
I’m From Barcelona  @ London Scala Tuesday 25th November
Ben Kweller  @ London Union Chapel Tuesday 9th December
Delays @ Southampton Orange Rooms Friday 12th December
Delays @ Southampton Joiners Saturday 13th December
Delays @ Southampton Brook Sunday 14th December

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