As Neighbourhood festival drew to a close the Albert Hall packed itself out to the rafters with punters from the day, ready to get one last dose of live music before heading home. If there was ever a setting where space age art-house rockers may look out of place it’s Albert Hall, the Grade II listed meeting hall, complete with stained glass windows. Despite this, Everything Everything make it their home. The North via Manchester band made their name in the city and rightfully did a victory lap of the A Fever Dream album cycle.
Opening on ‘Night of the Long Knives’. There’s something almost alarming about the manner in which the songs are performed. The first few chords whip up into anxious frenzy and frontman Jonathan Higgs comes to the centre stage almost too calmly in his orange raincoat like a spy gone rogue. There’s a danger to Everything Everything, to the uninitiated there’s an uncertainty to their music, even the most mellow tracks such as ‘A Fever Dream’ warp into these huge beasts, unable to be contained.
Big numbers like ‘Regret’ kept the crowd going through the longer, more experimental tracks. Despite competing with a wall of sound, Higg’s vocals rarely wavered from his signature falsetto. Songs from newest EP A Deeper Sea make their way into the set like ‘Breadwinner’ which despite being more rooted in RnB than the arthouse pop the band are known for, but it still sits comfortably in the set.
Everything Everything have a lot of material to play with. They’re lucky enough to have four full length albums that have all stood up, meaning that their set wasn’t short of well known material, songs like ‘Kemosabe’ just slot into the middle of the set. This is a testament to the band’s ability to weave similarities through nearly a decades’ worth of a work so that the body of work that stands now as a unified discography.
Neighbourhood closed on ‘No Reptiles’, it’s a perfect summing of the current mood in Britain and the division felt in society. Despite the content of the song though, the crowd had never looked more together. Seeing it as a last dance, a lot of people got up to grab their friends for this one and sing along to one last song before they went home, marking the end of Neighbourhood for another year.
Listen to Everything Everything here and keep your eyes peeled for news on Neighbourhood 2019.