Calvin Harris: Live Review, Nottingham Rock City, 25 October 2009
The crowd at Nottingham Rock City can – and do – reach newer lows every week. Take tonight for example: I thought I was being harsh taking bets on which idiot would decide to stand right in front of the girl in the wheelchair at the side of the stage, but when a crowd of morons turned up to do exactly that, even I was amazed.
Mr Hudson in 29-year-old age revelation shocker!
Not as amazed as I was after I googled Mr Hudson and found out his real age though: 29! That’s as old as I am! Although I look a lot better for it than he does. Even though his short set ends on a high note with the recent hit Supernova, the rest of it is pretty lacklustre. Kanye West’s bezzy mate? Well, Mr West probably needs all the friends he can get after his embarrassing public outbursts. But none of this terrible stuff matters because we’re here to see Scottish uber producer Calvin Harris! I’m a bit nervous for Calvin and unsure of what to expect after hearing the disappointing follow-up to his storming debut album a few months ago. I’m hoping he’ll give most of us what we really want and play lots of old-skool tunes tonight.
I see my first ever stage invasion at Nottingham Rock City tonight
Kicking off as predicted with the killer opening track from Ready For The Weekend, The Rain, he makes the place erupt with chaos when he finally appears on stage. Sadly, the appalling sound system at Rock City conspires to challenge the live band and Harris throughout their 90-minute set, which really is a bugger as what we’re meant to be hearing is some of the most banging music that’s been produced in recent times. What we end up with is a bit of a dirge – and if I didn’t know these tunes backwards I wouldn’t be able to make much out at all. Shame on you, Rock City.
But Colours and Merrymaking At My House, complete with their biting acidic electro disco basslines, patch things up nicely and by the time we get onto The Girls, everyone in the packed-out venue is utterly nuts. Legions of crowdsurfers, glowsticks being hurled through the airspace and everybody’s hands raised in unison – it really is pure insanity. I even see my first ever stage invasion at Rock City – but whoever put the flight cases right next to the bloody stage was asking for it to happen! Big props to the boy with the balls to scale them and jump onto the stage though; even if he was hurled off by a roadie within seconds of achieving this amazing feat.
Calvin Harris is the undisputed electro baadass of the year
In between the madness and his major anthems, Harris dishes out tracks from the new album and you know what, they don’t sound bad at all. Stars Come Out, even with its camp and cringeworthy bleeps underscoring the chorus, is more than passable and Lucy tells me that his new single Flashback is a tuuuuuuune! But even if I disagree, my doubts are dispelled with the inspired climax of I Created Disco, which sees an onslaught of crowdsurfers engulf Rock City’s normally listless bouncers and the entire venue go mental once again. It’s like an Ibiza foam party minus the foam but with a million additional tonnes of sweat. Niiice. No – it really is! He may throw irrational tantrums about not being allowed onto GMTV, but tonight has proved one thing – that Calvin Harris is the undisputed electro baadass of the year.