Hurrah for Justice!

13 Apr

Photo courtesy of JPW.

Lifting the roof.

Dark, dingy and desperate: January was a rubbish month. I had to get some sparkle back in my life.  I thought French electro band Justice could be just the ticket; I was rapidly falling in love with their new album “Audio, Video, Disco” and they were one of the few bands left I really wanted to go and see live.

The Birmingham O2 used to be “The Dome” nightclub, which many moons ago used to be the place to go, apparently. (However the last time I’d been there, I’d had so many K ciders that the whole place was tilted the wrong way up – but I could still see through my beer goggles – it was awful!

It seemed a hundred times better on this freezing February evening however, altogether more warm and lively and pumping with energy, stuffed to the gills with European teenagers, jostling aggressively for their place in the bar but when Justice took to the stage, they soon became one of the most fun-loving, whacky, out there dance movers of any crowd I’ve been in at a live show.

We were on the balcony and weren’t allowed to dance in our seats – or in the aisles, the bouncers were adamant – so I had to keep jumping up to go and go wild at the back. The thing about seeing Justice live is that they don’t let you stay still, just when you think you’ll take a breather they yank you back on your feet again for a fresh onslaught of their supernaturally head melting grooves.

Photo courtesy of JPW.

Silence.

They slickly mixed in the old with the new, tracks from “Cross” with new parts of “Audio, Video, Disco”. It sounded pretty fantastic. Yes, the light show was as fabulous as I’d been led to believe, with their now legendary Marshall stacks still on stage and different sorts of lights projected through and above them and the third member of their band, their glowing neon cross. At one point the set split apart to allow Xavier to sit down and play keyboard at another, spooky pipes rose and glowed.

Easily the best thing about this show was the atmosphere. Justice (Gaspard Augé and Xavier de Rosnay) are dab hands at controlling the crowd, they don’t say a word but know how to keep the tension taut – when to wrack up the sound, when to bring it down and pause, arms outstretched, beckoning…

The encore song “Audio, Video, Disco” was simply wowsome – the light show, stars streaking across the universe, everyone going mental. It was like being at the best club night ever, the music, the lights, the crowd, everything was spot on. Mr F. had to literally drag me away when it finished – “is that really the end?” I said. “I was ready to go on all night…”

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