Nick Mulvey @ KOKO, Camden – review
It’s been a while since I’ve been to a sell-out show and really felt it. KOKO became a beehive last night as stragglers at the back were desperately trying to find any viewing point from the packed out venue.
Yet, despite it being chock-a-block, it was a serenade of beautiful indie-folk. The minimal stage setup placed all the focus on Mulvey as he floated his fans through a mixture of his new album, released yesterday, and older more familiar tracks.
As the backing soundscapes filled the cracks between the bodies, Mulvey’s voice echoed over the top in an almost religious presence fixating everyone’s attention on him.
The keyboard and machine drums joined few and far between, letting Mulvey carry a lot of the show on his own. This only had you leaning in closely for his solos and set back in amazement when the drums and bass finally turned up.
The London sun must have had people in beer gardens straight after work as it was surprisingly rowdy. There was more fun at the back for this one as splinter groups erupted into the kind of dancing you see the Coachella influencers doing after their first experience on MDMA. That arms in the air, wrists together kind – y’know.
After leaving the stage as the backing music wound down, the crowd demanded one more song, thumping any inanimate object they could to make sure that he could hear them. And he did – they got four more.
“Yes yes, London” smiled Mulvey as he returned and also apparently became a DnB DJ.
At this point, the collective vocals of the audience outweighed Mulvey’s as he let them take the spotlight. He must have known it was coming as he had the audience maintaining the backing track like a wave machine that he could surf on with his godly voice.
The whole show was a mixture of a pleasantly energetic crowd supporting a humble Mulvey showcasing tracks that are clearly close to his heart – perfect. The crowd amplified him which further charged them in a benevolent cycle that peaked grandly on his final song.
The only issue with that is that his comments on climate change may have been missed by a few…