Kaiser Chiefs - The Great Escape Festival 2014 Live Review
Kaiser Chiefs exploded onto the stage in Brighton last Friday as fiery and energetic as ever. This time, however, with what seemed to be a little vengeance on their sleeve. Challenged by a 1pm stage-time, it seems the Kaiser Chiefs were more than prepared to shake-up the Thursday night hangovers, with doctor's orders for various stage aerobics and a number of crowd-pleasing sing-alongs.
Walking on to Bowie's 'Heroes' then proceeding into a chequered balance of the old and the new, made for an eventful setlist. From the off, commencing with 2005 hit 'Everyday I Love You Less And Less', then new track 'Ruffians on Parade', then second album classic 'Never miss a beat', the Chiefs were out to demonstrate how the new material holds up against their host of already established festival anthems. Live, this worked a treat, however on the record and despite 'Education, Education, Education & War''s No.1 chart success, the new, more theatrical approach to songwriting doesn't seem to be winning over much of an audience as much as Ricky Wilson's 'The Voice' has been.
With the Chiefs' founding member and drummer Nick Hodgson departing the line-up after more than 10 years' service, it's been all but cool runnings for the group to maintain the steady pace that Hodgson possessed both onstage and on record. Their new album 'began out of frustration', states the band. With Hodgson being replaced by former Club Smith drummer Vijay Mistry, the band's live dynamic has altered dramatically, taking to the stage on Friday with a much heavier feel than ever before, perhaps even a little racy and fast at times, although winning much appreciation from the early bird crowd. Of course, when one goes to a Chiefs gig, it is not expected to have your mood lighting at the ready, or your Baileys on the bar. Friday's Concorde 2 saw rafts of beer, crowd surfing cross-dressers and of course, Ricky Wilson's famous stage antics.
Closing the set with new track 'Misery Company' before exploding into an amazing performance both on and off stage with 2005 single 'Oh my God', there is no denying the power of the Kaiser Chiefs' live presence. They have been and evidently will remain to be one of the best live acts Britain has to offer. Just what is next for the band's album career?
The event was hosted and filmed by Amazon Music which will be available online this week.