Archive for the ‘P J Harvey’ Category

Portishead and P J Harvey Alexandra Palace London 23 July 2011

Portishead and P J Harvey at I’ll be your Mirror London
Laura currently declares Portishead to be her favourite band, and I’ve quite fancied seeing Polly Harvey for some years so this lineup, coupled with the All Tomorrows Parties brand (ATP were promoting this event), made this in-door festival something worth going to. We took the train to London and dropped our things off at the usual Kings Cross Travelodge, and made our way to the venue for around 7pm. First stop was the merchandise stall, where Laura bought a festival t-shirt and was also recognised by the members of Foot Village who had played earlier in the day. Shift-Static supported Foot Village at the Head of Steam in Newcastle a couple of years ago, so Laura was delighted that the band still remembered her (and her shoes!). We then made our way to the Great Hall. The Alexandra Palace is a lovely venue, and has hosted many legendary events in the past including Pink Floyd’s 1968 Technicolour Dream and Zeppelin in the 70s.
P J Harvey came on stage promptly at 7.45 and played to a tightly packed hall. We were sat on the disabled platform, which was to the left of the stage and gave us a good view of the proceedings. Her set was unfamiliar to me, and was drawn largely from her latest album. Dressed all in black, she has a strong voice, and certainly went down well with the crowd. OK but not quite as epic as I had expected. She was on stage for about one hour, and after she had finished the hall emptied while people explored the other halls.
At around 9.30 Portishead took the stage, by which time the hall had filled up again. They delivered an excellent set. Beth’s vocals were amazing, as was the guitar work. Great use of dynamics and a very crisp, loud sound with great psychedelic 60s-ish visuals.
Portishead finished at 11pm prompt and we made our way back to our hotel via the shuttle bus to Wood Green and the tube, which all worked very well. We were back watching the TV and the sad news about Amy Winehouse by midnight.
Portishead setlist: Silence – Mysterons – The Rip – Sour Times – Magic Doors – Wandering Star – Machine Gun – Nylon – Over – Glory Box Chase The Tear – Cowboys – Threads – – – Roads – We Carry On