Biffy Clyro played an intimate acoustic show to just 100 ticket winners in Leeds last night (June 1) at former textile mill Headrow House. Tickets were only available to people attending Reading and Leeds Festival, which the Scots rockers will headline alongside Red Hot Chili Peppers, Fall Out Boy and Foals in August. The band, who have already unveiled new single ‘Animal Style’, are set to release their album Ellipsis on July 8. These were the best bits from the super special show.
Getting up close and personal
A far cry from the festivals they will be headlining this summer, it is not often you see a band that has sold over a million records play above a small city-centre bar. Introducing his band with a wry “We are The 1975”, the smirking Simon Neil acknowledged the fact that there’s now another frontman who’s equally as fond as shirtlessness as he is. Hiya, Matt Healy. Neil went on to finish the set with a cool “Thank you for being so lucky,” in the direction of the comp winners. “I wish it would fucking rub off or something – see you in a field somewhere”.
New song ‘Rearrange’ killed it
One of the standout performances of the evening, new song ‘Rearrange’ made it hard to believe that the band started off as Nirvana-obsessed teenagers. Speaking to NME, Simon Neil revealed that he was in a “terrible headspace” when making the new album. Sounds it, because ‘Rearrange’ features some deeply personal lyrics – we’re thinking: “You should by now that I’m broken and I need your help/I wrote a hundred songs to make sense of the meaningless”. We’re here for you, Simon.
‘Black Chandelier’ was when things went up a gear
‘Black Chandelier’ was the first song that got the initially timid audience singing along. Simon Neil, who is probably more used to mega massive festival crowds belting the anthem back at him, paused to say “that’s more like it” in appreciation when people finally got properly involved and hollered along. He halted again moments later when a spotlight suddenly lit up his face, “I take it the lighting guy has just turned up then?” he asked.
New tune ‘Medicine’ is a beautiful belter
The emotive live performance of another new tune, ‘Medicine’, proved that the Kilmarnock rockers still have a knack for writing a syrupy-sweet melody when they want to. Very nice indeed.
‘Machines’ was tight as anything
Machines was undoubtedly the highlight of the hour long set. The super intimate performance of one of their most heartrending acoustic tracks showed just how tight a band can become after playing together for over two decades – very, very tight indeed. Despite that, they weren’t afraid of letting the crowd do some of the work too, with Simon stepping back from the mic and letting the audience take over. Now roll on Reading and Leeds so another 150,000 people can see them instead of just a poxy 100.
Words: Mason Jones
Photos: Danny Payne