2014 has already been a mind-blowing year for Clean Bandit, with their debut single Rather Be sitting comfortably at the top of the charts for several weeks, having sold over half a million copies in the UK alone.
Needless to say, the old cathedral was packed to the rafters with the electric vibe of fans eagerly anticipating the headliner’s arrival onto the minimalistic stage. But amazingly, after all of that, they were a real disappointment.
Aside from their chart topping single, the rest of their set lacked any real depth to it, and was bland and watery. Slower, gentler electronic introductions launched into clubbing beats on almost every single track. The whole set seemed like they were trying too hard to be cool, which naturally resulted in the exact opposite effect, and there was a vibe of false community among the singers on stage.
In fact – they reminded me of the three main Mean Girls, where scowling lead singer would be cast as Regina George, spaced out Grace Chatto as Karen, thus defaulting the other singer with multi-coloured hair to the role of Grecin weiner. Chatto had such glazed eyes and rigid features that she resembled a porcelain doll as she played electric cello on stage, which gave a haunting feel to the whole performance.
The few saving graces were the visuals behind them, which offered a new presence to the stage, and the furious electric violin solos where the bow became a blur.