"Most rock journalism is people who can't write, interviewing people who can't talk, for people who can't read." - Frank Krappa

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Gig: Caribou @ Shepherds Bush Empire 22/2/11


Last night I saw Caribou at Shepherds Bush Empire. He/they was/were pretty damn awesome.

I got there in time to see the closing 15 minutes of Factory Floor. They've been getting a significant amount of hype for a while (enough to be the main support at a NME Awards show), and I guess they are a hype-makers dream (weird and inaccessibly). Their performance generally consisted of a looped beat with lots of random noises made by a keyboard, guitar and live drummer. It was pleasant enough to witness and became alluringly hypnotic, but I couldn't help but think that it just sounded like someone trying out all of the different sounds and settings on their new synthesizer. It was a bit like baverage, old fashioned electronic dance music, just without any dancing. I can understand people enjoying the live spectacle, but I seriously do not understand why someone would buy their music and listen to it at home.

After I lined up for the cloakroom and squeezed back into the crowd, Caribou came on. During the opening song 'Leave House', Dr. Dan Snaith's microphone went in and out of audibility, which was an early sign of the sound problems that would plague (but not come close to ruining) the rest of the night. Despite the problems, they played an absolutely terrific set for 1 hour and 15 minutes, playing classics from both Andorra and Swim. They also extended many of their more danceable songs to the complete joy of me and the rest of the crowd.

However, within a few minutes of their set beginning, it became quite obvious that the venue was much, much too full. Even though I was at the back, I couldn't move and was stuck awkwardly between a woman's boob and the wiggling bum of the man in front of me. The managers of the venue should really lower the amount of standing tickets they sell, as it came close to ruining the night. Despite the horrific over-population of the venue, and the resulting 40 minute queue for the cloakroom, Caribou were good enough to make it one of the best gigs I've been to in a while. They encored with the most epically mindblowing rendition of 'Sun' anyone could ever hope to imagine. I really, really hope someone got a good quality video of the whole thing.

I can't find any videos of last nights gig, but here's a beautiful one of his last London gig with Four Tet (which I sadly missed):

Also, I'm incredibly happy that they've been added to the line-up of the ATP/I'll Be Your Mirror Portishead gig I'm going to in July. It's going to be one of the best days of my life.

In other news, I bought tickets to the ATP Jeff Mangum in December! Really, really excited!


  1. here's a video from the concert.. I was lucky enough to get a level 1 seat on the side, in my opinion the best place to enjoy the gig. sorry 'bout the low audio quality, but a cellphone microphone can't do much better than this with high volume levels..


  2. It's awesome that any of it's on camera at all, thanks for letting me know!