Barfly, Glasgow, Sun 19 Oct
It’s no way to endear yourself to a crowd when one song in you announce ‘I know it’s a Sunday night and all Glasgow, but this is a Bloc Party show!’ A declaration from Kele Okereke that could easily be taken as a preening popstar sniping because he isn’t being shown the requisite love – or perhaps it’s just an off-hand joke. Hope is that he only wanted to snap the tiny crowd of 300 – here for this MTV Gonzo Tour Special – out of their isn’t-this-weird-seeing-a-big-band-in-a-small-space type gawping.
And it is a treat to see Bloc Party up close like this, and OK, some of the chiming subtleties of Okereke and Russell Lissak’s stereo guitar charge are lost (if not missed by many) in the excitement but much of the rattling energy that made their debut Silent Alarm so damn beguiling is here.
Interspersing the keen, more recent moments of electro-driven fury like ‘Mercury’ and ‘Flux’ with glorious renditions of ‘Hunting for Witches’ and ‘Helicopters’, Bloc Party proved their chops in an intimate performance good enough to excuse, or at least obliterate, any rock star posturing.