Declan Mckenna; the pinnacle of crazily charismatic live shows.
With impressive support from the ever-so-slightly technically impaired Orla Gartland – the Dublin-born delight with a DIY heart. The night was instantly propelled into a long-lasting heap of happiness. Orla’s cheerful set primarily consisted of unreleased beauties with her fan-favourite ‘Roots’ thrown in for good measure. As a fan of Declan herself, it was clear that she was having the time of her life that night and that positive energy gleamed throughout the audience as well. With presumably new music imminent, the bundle of acoustic indie-pop joy that is Orla is certainly one to keep an eye on.
Now on to the main event; Mr. McKenna himself. Now, for me personally, this was my second time seeing Declan live as I was lucky enough to witness him at a DIY event towards the end of last year but boy has he ameliorated in such a short time – don’t get me wrong, his DIY performance was a standout show-stopper in its own right but the sheer energy and talent that man produces has only proliferated – his shows are often met with increasingly high expectations but he certainly excels them. For me, he is the current icon of contemporary intuitive indie – this paired with his distinct Bowie influences proves he will be notably special in his future.
The impeccable set at the iconic London venue included hits such as; the summer anthem ‘Brazil’ and beloved ‘Isombard’ as well as unreleased works of art such as the lyrically intelligent ‘Humongous’ and powerfully hypnotic ‘Mind’. From start to finish, the set, that consisted of two crowd surfs, a tampon and an audience left chanting for more, did nothing but permeate vibrant felicity and remind everyone in the venue why they love music so much.
With an album expected to drop in May and a headline tour announced for the same month with support from the bubblegum PC music queen that is GIRLI, I urge each and every one of you to aim to be in a Declan McKenna crowd at some point in your life. It will be a night you won’t ever forget!