Whether you’re dizzy on caffeine or drunk from beer, seeing Glass Animals in concert is an unforgettable experience. Ellen Kinsey danced the night away during their latest trip to the O2 Academy Bristol as they powered through their vibrant catalogue of hip-hop and indie inflicted hits.
Glass Animals’ new album is reminiscent of memories of my summers. A melodic escape to sun beams rippling through trees, late night drives blaring music down the moonlit streets and hanging out barefoot with friends on the hot pavement.
Glass Animals have a unique quality of creating a sense of something tactile with their music. Expanding from the tangibility of nature with their psychedelic sound in their first album ZABA; How to be a Human Being evolved into a more urban tone, revolving around the eccentricities of humanity and life itself. Amazingly enough on March 15th, their music brought with it the summer sun – Bristol was christened with the first rays of sunshine. Everyone was conversing with their friends on the grass, having late afternoon cocktails and chilling on their neglected, decrepit deckchair in their gardens, and Glass Animals was the perfect soundtrack to this sunny day.
Dave Bayley’s contagious stage presence created an incredible effervescent energy throughout the O2 Academy.
For those of us lucky enough to have our summer soundtrack realized live on stage, Dave Bayley’s contagious stage presence created an incredible effervescent energy throughout the O2 Academy. Commencing the unique experience of their psychedelic soundscape was the anthemic song, ‘Life Itself’. With it’s distinctive sound introduced by tribal drums, an assortment of percussion, lyrical narrative and its explicitly catchy chorus and fun beat; the crowd were already jumping and singing, becoming a hot mess as soon as the concert had started.
Mellowing out from the energetic debut, follows ‘Black Mambo’ and ‘Hazey’. Both from their previous album, these tracks transported the crowd to blissful, dizzying world with their use of exotic instrumentals and experimental percussion. Shifting from naturalistic vibes the set continues with ‘Poplar Street’; with rifts heavily influenced by the Red Hot Chili Peppers and indie tunes such as ‘The Other Side of Paradise’ and ‘Season 2 Episode 3’ with their quirky musical arrangements and comical lyrics, including “my girl eats mayonnaise from a jar while she’s gettin’ blazed”.
Glass Animals’ performance must be described as an ‘experience’, which took the crowd from the lively tropics to a stoner’s basement in an urban city.
The set then transitioned to ‘Toes’, a song that entices even the most enthusiastic of dancers to roll their eyes back in their head and sway to the chilled out track with every pounding beat and synthetic rumble of the percussion and trickle or chirp of the sounds of nature. ‘Take A Slice’, a track with a combination of heavy drums accompanied by a gibberish stream of consciousness which perfectly captures the mental state of how you feel when you’re a bit messed up; (which I’m sure reflected how numerous individuals felt during their performance!) I was certainly getting delirious from the sweaty space and trippy lights. Next were ‘Cane Shuga’, ‘Youth’ , ‘Gooey’ and ‘Agnes’, which, although contrasting songs, allowed the set to maintain its sense continuity by lacing it all together with an assortment of percussion and lyrical, experimental storytelling.
Glass Animals’ performance must be described as an ‘experience’, which took the crowd from the lively tropics to a stoner’s basement in an urban city. It was all too sad when it came to a close with ‘Pools’ where one would only need to close one’s eyes to visualize an exotic escape – although it was easy to acclimatize to this setting with the contribution of the body heat radiating through the room and the ecstatic energy pulsating from start to finish. Ending the experience, Dave Bayley entered the stage with his notorious pineapple, using it, fruitfully, as his drum. I was genuinely upset that it was over – Glass Animals are not an act to be missed. They provide a live experience truly unlike any other.
Did you get lost in Glass Animals’ show at the O2 Academy? Let us know in the comments below or via social media.