+ Late Of The Pier @
Somerset House, London, 11 July 2008
Well, so far this summer has really put the BS into BST
hasn't it? Thankfully the capital has a thriving music scene
to see us through these dark days and what better form of
escapism from the British weather then the manic Parisian
electro symphonies of Justice?
not forget the support act though. Late Of The Pier
are a quartet that hail from Castle Donington and have a
major label deal in their pockets and a debut album due
Lead singer Samuel Eastgate, with his About A Boy basin
haircut, is certainly a charismatic performer as he jumps
and shouts his way around the stage.
epic and with enough 'Oooooohs' to rival the Kaiser
Chiefs' 'Ohhhhhhs' any day, if you catch my drift,
this is glam-rocking synthpop with the onus on freewheeling
fun. Their performance, which ranges from overblown melodic
histrionics to aggressive exuberance, still manages to warm
the cockles even in the torrential downpour that Mother
Nature is inflicting upon the crowd. With a strong set of
indie party anthems and the revered Erol Alkan
on the controls for their album they should be well set
for future success.
Justice take to the stage, brooding, dark
clouds hang overhead but the rain is at bay. They start
with album opener, Genesis, and a huge drape falls down
from in front of them to reveal banks of electronic gear
that make Gaspard Augé and Xavier de Rosnay look
like they're manning a spacecraft. In the centre glows their
trademark white cross. The dramatic start continues as they
tease us with Phantom before launching headlong into it,
leaving grins plastered on the faces of the screaming throng.
Next up is D.A.N.C.E., a singalong dance classic if ever
there was one as is Tthhee Ppaarrttyy, which also gets a
the loudest chant is reserved for their take on ex-indie
boys Simian's We Are Your Friends, which the duo begin by
cheekily mixing it in with Klaxons' Atlantis To Interzone.
The feisty but friendly crowd wave and cheer as a helicopter
circling above grants its passengers a unique viewing of
the pandemonium going on in the Somerset House courtyard.
second part of the set is almost like a twisted medley of
the first with Phantom played again but mangled and tweaked
into a new form. Part three then ups the ante further as
the tunes are mashed still further into even less recognisable
shapes. The heavens open as jackhammer beats and rock guitar
samples also rain down on the crowd. Weirdly, the torrential
downpour enhances the experience and the euphoric, beat-riddled
build-ups are met by drenched, clenched fists punching the
the Frenchmen are just making the most of having a limited
amount of material they carry it off in style and leave
the crowd with throbbing feet and grin-induced face-ache.
This was a night of drama, peaks, troughs and general sweaty,
filthy electro mayhem. A gig to remember that places Justice
up there with the Chemical Brothers as
one of dance music's most entertaining live acts.
- Ian Roullier, 07/2008