Victoria Park, London
Friday 25th August 2023
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ALL POINTS EAST – THE STROKES – LIVE REVIEW
All Points East has now firmly established its place in the UK festival calendar having already brought some huge names to Victoria Park in London in recent years.
Those names included The Strokes in 2019 when their headline set was struck by sound issues. That perhaps is the reason for their relatively quick return this year, but fans also have the prospect of hearing material from 2020 release ‘The New Abnormal’.
But before we get there we have a lot more to get through, that is after we get through traffic issues outside of London which sadly means with miss both HotWax and FEET.
When we do arrive in the arena, we head straight to the East Stage (one of two huge outdoor main stages) for the reformed Be Your Own Pet. The band only reunited last year but they own the stage today as if they’ve never been away. With their fantastic performance, Jemina Pearl starts a theme of woman stealing the show today.
A brisk walk is then required to get over to the West Stage for another reunion! The Walkmen have recently returned and draw a good early crowd to the stage. The band return the favour with a career-spanning crowd pleaser of a set.
Soon though, it’s time for the woman to take centre stage again with Amyl and the Sniffers quickly making the West Stage their own. Frontwoman Amy Taylor already has the audience in the palm of her hand when an almighty downpour commences. For most acts this would kill their momentum, but the band are able to hold the crowd and ramp up the intensity, creating a moment that will last long in the memory.
WATCH ‘MAPS’ ON YOUTUBE
Another short wait on the West Stage is all it takes for another incredible female artist to steal the show. The iconic Karen O leads Yeah Yeah Yeahs through a headline worthy performance which is absolutely enthralling.
By the time the band closes out their set with ‘Maps’, ‘Heads Will Roll’ and ‘Date With The Night’, they’ve proven themselves to be one of the best live bands on the planet. Captivating, dazzling and glorious, you start your walk back to the East Stage wondering how on earth our headline act can match that performance.
Sadly for The Strokes the fateful enemy has a say once again with sound issues somehow a problem once more. Many in the crowd complain that the volume is too low, something perhaps not helped by the meandering pace of the setlist.
That said, when the band do dig out the hits the crowd comes to life. The setlist features many of the same staples as 2019 but we do get ‘Ode to the Mets’ and ‘The Adults Are Talking’ from their latest studio effort.
Through their ninety minute set the band are able to evidence why they are one of the most acclaimed acts of the past two decades and it is far from a bad performance.
You just leave with the same disappointment as last time due to sound problems dampening the show. Perhaps that means the band will be back again in a couple of years, but either way All Points East continues to go from strength to strength and this year is another resounding success!
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