It was second time lucky for Mancunian four-piece Everything Everything at Norwich’s UEA on Friday (April 13th), after a last minute Beast from the East induced cancellation of the initial early March date. It’s one of two rescheduled UK shows (alongside Birmingham) before a pre-festival season venture around Europe, a tour in support of fourth studio album ‘A Fever Dream’, and the surprise-released ‘A Deeper Sea’ EP.
It’s Friday 13th, but luck is most definitely on their side as the art pop outfit deliver a thrilling live set fit for the most sophisticated of music fans. With eight years dropping music but only a couple gaining deserved recognition, it is refreshing to witness a packed-out venue of fans who know every lyrical quirk and erratic offbeat.
Everything Everything produce music remarkably hard to pin down, a band who’s USP lies in their artistic quality as rule-breakers of genre; EE are about packing multiple sonics into one portion of banger-delicious art, not about producing easy-to-consume singular ‘songs’. This is what makes tonight an exhilarant start to an otherwise ordinary spring weekend.
An Everything Everything gig isn’t about swaying to a calculable melody, clapping to a consistent beat, and tonight in Norwich this isn’t any different. The experience is a rickety rollercoaster of twist, turns and sudden drops - you can forget a time signature, and certainly forget reaching the height of frontman Jonathan Higgs’ falsetto.
The stage is a spectacle of light and the venue a vault of spirit. Opener, album title track ‘A Fever Dream’, establishes what is to be an evening of fantasia, the piano ballad blooming into a crescendo of crashing rhythms and euphorically executed electronics. Higgs’ hops confidently from keyboard to guitar, to a mic-wielding entertainer.
As one of the most innovative bands on the alternative circuit, the show is a display of sounds which never lull into a false sense of security; one minute we’re at the disco, the next a 90s rave, art pop textures blending the likes of math rock and expert guitar riffs. It all feels as unpredictable as the political climate and as uneasy as the humanistic anxieties they write about. Highlights come in the form of ‘Night Of The Long Knives’ - with its trickling production and spot hitting synth drops - and the staccato noise rock of crowd favourite, ‘Ivory Tower’. With the band’s jaunty approach to songwriting, the show isn’t one for constant sing-alongs, although pop tune ‘Spring / Sun / Winter / Dread’ is the hook heavy anthem each show demands - “I don’t want to get older”.
An encore of outlandish pop track ‘Breadwinner’, from the band’s latest EP proves a true fan front-runner, while sampled disco track ‘Distant Past’ inspires an all-inclusive final dance. Everything Everything put on a show which celebrates musicality as a genre-irrelevant entity, and it’s a real party. Better late than never.
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Words: Alice Mortimer
For tickets to the latest Everything Everything shows click HERE.
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