Sunday, 10 June 2012

Biffy, Biffy, Biffy, Choke, Biffy, Biffy, Biffy...

I woke up this morning with a grey dent in my right foot, black ink dissipating deep into my left-hand skin and very little voice. For many teenagers across the country, perhaps this is not so unusual after a Friday night out, but for one whose nights out largely consist of nights spent no further than my living room, I found it a little shocking. And very, very funny.

You see, last night I saw Biffy Clyro play their festival warm-up show in Swindon, and to describe it with justice I can really only apply teenage non-words. It was mental. Freakin' insane. Utter madness. And I loved it. I guess you could say I had a few apprehensions; a year and a half ago I saw them play Wembley, and so you might see why next seeing them at a sports centre could feel like a step back. Of all the places in the UK they could have chosen, I simply cannot understand why Swindon was selected. That being said, I'm stupidly glad that they did.

Some people in the crowd seemed to be of a similar mindset, as they contemplated the size of venue and acoustics etc. as we waited for the support band; but frankly, as soon as Biffy came out it just did not matter. They're the kind of band that could play in your bathroom and they'd still be perfect. And so they were.

Their set was longish (21 songs, none of this 15-and-out rubbish) and included some new material which, obviously, was brilliant. They played four new ones (Modern Magic Formula, Sounds Like Balloons, The Joke's On Us and Victory Over The Sun) and the regular favourites (The Captain, Who's Got A Match?, Folding Stars...), whilst still covering material from all four albums, something most bands don't bother with any more. The only significant omission was 57, which the crowd chanted for throughout, but after a set like that you can't really complain.  Frankly, there's very little to say against them, except maybe ask why they used the forest image as a backdrop? But really, it looked so cool that no one actually cares.

Pure Love playing support were similarly amazing. Frank Carter's new project is something he's obviously really crazy for, as he explained to us before wading into the crowd to sing two songs in thick circles. They didn't really need to 'warm us up' though; it was impossible not to be psyched that evening.

And that's kind of it. Sadly I won't be seeing Biffy play any festivals this summer, having tickets for Reading and not RockNess, Download or Isle of Wight. Thing is, they leave you on such a high that I think I'll be able to cope for a few weeks yet anyway, before lapsing into despair and wishing I had had tickets for all three. But we'll burn that bridge when we get there.

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