When it comes to loving music, loving live music in particular is a huge aspect. And since we’re at that time again, let’s reflect across the past 12 months at some of the best live performances that we’ve had in 2017. From the amazing line-ups to mind blowing festival performances, and the intimate experiences to the explosive hidden gems, take a look at our category for: ICM Awards 2017: Best Live Performance.
Spring King, The Big Moon, Get Inuit (Indoor Pets) @ The Sugarmill, Stoke-on-Trent
Spring King have always been an energetic band. Gracing the stage with their insane break beats, dirty guitar riffs that are impossible to stand still to. When you have a fanbase like Spring Kings, which are equally as mental as the bands music, you will find it impossible to stand still when at a Spring King gig. For us the line-up adds that extra something. Support from The Big Moon and Get Inuit, both bands on the verge of achieving something truly spectacular, this didn’t seem like an ordinary gig. It felt like the future blessing of a Glastonbury evening line-up, we at ICM certainly hope so!
Marsicans – Close Up Promotions Festival, London
Sticking with the energetic feel of live performances, Marsicans are way at the top of the list due to their sheer passion, joyfulness and excitement when performing. Marsicans are a band of equal spotlight, sharing the stage and utilising all of their band members to embrace the crowd and draw them in to huge tracks and to meet them on their level! Close Up Promotions Festival showcased some of the greatest upcoming indie acts but for us Marsicans stole the show!
Tom Grennan – 2Q Festival, Doc Marten’s Session, Derby
Tom Grennan’s voice is undoubtedly one of the most recognisable in the upcoming indie scene this year. He’s dominated the indie community as well as mainstream charts. Its this voice that is the highlight to many who get to witness his live events. But its not just the capability of filling a large venue with his bellowing words that Tom has, but the intricacy of every syllable and being able to make people’s hairs stand on end within an intimate venue are also in his repertoire. Stumbling into Doc Marten’s in Derby to witness ‘Something In The Water’ was a huge highlight of our 2017.
Sisteray – Shindignation Festival, London
Shindignation is a small up and coming day festival in Bow, East London which mainly focuses on indie rock and punk rock bands. Sisteray were the penultimate act on the main stage and my god they have a knack for effortless guitar riffs that burst with tuneful attitude. Their upbeat melodies and observations of 21st century Britain show a band not afraid to voice their disaffection towards the establishment and political elite. It was the first time we’ve seen them perform live and you get exactly what you expect. ‘Queen’s English’ and ‘Nostalgia Trip’ adorned with elegant riffs and timeless bass lines. There’s plenty to get excited about so keep an eye out on what they’re up to next.
JAWS – Scala, London
It was a culmination of both the ruckus crowd and the tunes to match. JAWS are an endless showcase of how far talented songwriting and big choruses can completely change the landscape of your music. The night itself just had a big band feel. It was like waiting for your favourite act at the O2 but at Scala of all places. I think what defines JAWS as one of the best live performers is how they sound LIVE. Track for track is utterly flawless. We talk a lot about how bands sounding just like their records have perfected the mystery and art of live performing. These guys set the bar.
GLASS PEAKS – Hoxton Bar and Kitchen, London
Kent band Glass Peaks have had one heck of a year i.e. losing a member, two new singles and praise from BBC Introducing Kent. But the trio carry on by playing our Blogtober show (29th October) and playing two shows for CloseUp Promotions. One of which was at Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen back in July and my god did they put out all the stops on this show. Grant on the hard-hitting drums got to have his own mini set in a sense and long drum solos on a couple of tracks to beef out their well-rehearsed set.
Easy Life – Live At Leeds Festival, Leeds
Easy Life are a must see for any music lover. Their interpolation of every genre going along with endless levels of creativity create minutes of audio which is pure bliss to the listener. So to see each and every band members personalities shining through their live sets also adds that intricacy many live performances lack. Live at Leeds was an entire 6 months before their debut single dropped, yet the band were already at a comfortable position. The future is blindingly bright for Easy Life.
Sundara Karma – Dot to Dot Festival, Nottingham
What a performance! Sensitive lyrics and groovy riffs yet truly explosive in every single way. It’s hard to sum up this performance due to simply being speechless at the time. Throughout Sundara Karma’s entire musical journey, we at ICM like to think we were there relatively early, and we’re so grateful to have been introduced to their music at such a time. So to witness them grow, develop, expand and ultimately flourish into this incredibly captivating musical ensemble that raises its audience to a state which is simply indescribable, truly is a speechless moment.
Wolf Alice – Boileroom, Guildford
Off the back of several single releases and the imminent sophomore album, Wolf Alice embarked on a tour of tiny raucous shows in grass roots venues round the country. I was lucky enough to see them in my favourite venue, The Boileroom in. Guildford. Their set was the most intense, sweaty, and absolutely blistering performance I’ve ever seen. My favourite show I’ve been to ever and you could just tell they loved every bit of it.
The Amazons, Rescue Rooms, Nottingham
Their Rescue Rooms gig was a sold out show, packed full of people from all age ranges. The band worked the crowd like seasoned professionals despite this being their first major tour, celebrating the release of their debut album. Their set list had so much variety, ranging from party-starter ‘Black Magic’ to the slightly more reflective ‘Palace’, the crowd standing calmly and quietly listening to the dulcet tones on Thomson on the keyboard.