Friendly Fires play ‘surreal’ St Albans homecoming

Band get Herts pulsing at Alban Arena

Friendly Fires played an emotional homecoming in St Albans last night (September 3).

Though the Hertfordshire city is rarely on the touring circuit, the band insisted it was included on the tour, which saw them play a sold-out show at the Alban Arena.

“I never thought I’d say this but good evening St Albans!” declared frontman Ed Macfarlane as his band took the stage before later adding: “This is definitely one of the most surreal, bizarre days of my life, but I’m loving it!”

Playing tracks from their self-titled, Barclaycard Mercury Prize-nominated 2008 debut album, the band insisted they were hear to get “St Albans to dance”, before boasting the small venue’s balcony were outdoing fans on the dancefloor downstairs.

The taunt had the desired effect, as the 900-strong crowd went wild for the likes of ‘White Diamonds’ and ‘Strobe’.

New single ‘Kiss Of Life’ helped maintain the carnival spirit, before the band cranked things up with ‘Photobooth’.

With their crowd at the civic centre venue practically drinking the bar dry – organisers were running out all night – the band ended their set with ‘Paris’.

Returning for their encore, Friendly Fires then performed a euphoric version of ‘Ex Lover’ with Macfarlane switching to the bass, allowing the band to double up on percussion for the climax.

“Thank you very much, it’s been a pleasure to play back in St Albans,” the singer told the crowd as the group ended the song – and their homecoming – in a blitz of noise and feedback.

Friendly Fires played:

‘Lovesick’
‘Jump In The Pool’
‘Skeleton Boy’
‘In The Hospital’
‘White Diamonds’
‘Strobe’
‘Kiss Of Life’
‘Photobooth’
‘On Board’
‘Paris’
‘Ex Lover’