There was a mosh pit at NME HQ. Standard.
NME HQ doubles up as a gig venue nowadays, you know, which means that mundane Thursday nights sometimes become absolute rowdfests. Take last night: in association with Estrella Galicia, we invited dream-pop purveyors Wild Front and grunge revivalists INHEAVEN to make a bloody mess of our gaffe, and they did so with near-total disregard for civility and personal space.
The former band, a five-piece from Southhampton, started off as frontman Jack Williams’ solo project, which morphed from a Bon Iver-influenced, folky affair to the hazy, 80s-influenced group that was all up in our earholes last night. Snappily-dressed four-piece INHEAVEN, meanwhile, have emerged from the south London scene that’s given us so many amazing punk-influenced bands of late (HMTLD, Shame and Goat Girl, we’re looking at you).
Anyway, both sets were killer, there was a mosh pit and a stage invasion and, yes, it was all washed down with a few tasty Estrellas. Here’s the pictorial evidence.
This is what the stage looked like before INHEAVEN destroyed it.
And this is what the Estrella looked like before we, similarly, had our wicked way with it.
London DJ Goldierocks was on hand to to keep the good times a-rolling before and after the show, dropping bangers from the likes of Metronomy and Wolf Alice. It was just right.
INHEAVEN kicked it backstage with NME, talking 'zines, as they love making their own print magazines and even included one in the recent release of their self-titled debut album. They'll be telling us vinyl is making a comeback next!
And then it was time for Wild Front, whose nostalgia-tinged new single 'Southside' is out RIGHT NOW.
Jack told us he reckons 'Southside' the best thing the band has done and, you know what, the crowd seemed to agree, swaying in time to its funky, funky groove.
We THINK this lot was here for INHEAVEN.
We THINK these guys were here for the Estrella.
FACT: INHEAVEN have better suits and hair than you. The band opened with the fearsome 'Bitter Town' (great lyric alert: "I don't know what I need / I ain't go no policies / All I really know is I got you" and demanded of the audience: "Show us what you got, London!"
In return, fans down the front shouted out the names of towns and cities they demanded the band play on their upcoming UK tour. Readers, they're playing 'em all.
At one point, singer and guitarist James politely asked the crowd to form a mosh pit. "Come on," he said, "we've all had a couple of Estrellas." That guy in the white t-shirt led the stage invasion, during 'Regeneration', shortly after this photo was taken. Look closer and you can see in his eyes that he's planning such an audacious manoeuvre.
This is the kind of jaunty pose you pull when you've just delivered a killer show in the NME basement. It'll never be the same again.