I didn’t know you could get the train from Old Street to Highbury & Islington! Amazing. When I lived at the end of Old Street I would always just walk up to Union Chapel. But the times they are a’changing! I got the train and it took a delightful 5 minutes to get there. Sweet. This was a really fun gig with lots of friends and people I know there. The church was all decorated up with waves and animals and trees and it was lovely.
The show was a Willkommen Collective night featuring more than a few bands all from the Collective. It’s kind of like the Broken Social Scene collective, but more British and alot more folky.
Rowan Coupland was first. He was accompanied by a choir and they utilised the gorgeous acoustics of Union Chapel perfectly, wandering up and down the aisles singing and playing with their voices reverberating around the epic church. Beautiful! At times he reminded me of Final Fantasy, especially during his more dramatic moments whilst singing over the top of the choir ( and at one point he flung himself onto the ground). I loved his set and he did a brilliant job of opening up the show.
Shoreline were next and they were suitably epic. The tag team string section of Will and Michael are brilliant. I loved the double bass, it all sounded so perfect in the church. The same can be said for Sons of Noel and Adrian. They were (literally!) foot stompingly good. Sweet Billy Pilgrim had a few good moments, but they played for AGES, which was a bit frustrating because when The Leisure Society took to the stage they apologetically announced that they only had 15 minutes to play. Grrr. They ended up having a tiny bit longer, and they were brilliant. Such a fantastic band. They ended with some sweet ukulele orchestra fun, joined by other members of the collective. Beautiful.
I want to know what the deal was with the penguin guy walking about upstairs. In the interlude between bands we had some fun watching a person with a penguin mask waddling around upstairs. The gig was made even better by the fact Alessi came along with her dad. Anything is made better by the presence of Alessi. Yay! Good times.