The Streets - Freeze Festival 2011 review

'The crowds give back some of the love that The Streets have given them'


Photographer:Sara Bowrey

United Kingdom United Kingdom | by Matt Cook | 30 October 2011


After announcing earlier in the year that this would be their last London gig, this festival closing headline slot took on more significance for Streets fans, and it was always going to be an emotional affair. 

Frontman Mike Skinner is visibly sad about the whole thing, and obviously desperately wants this to be something really special. Trying to build up the atmosphere with a selection of tracks spanning their 17 year career, they look like they are relishing the moment. However, in trying to engage the crowd to join him in celebrating what is undoubtedly the end of an era for them, he ends up spending much of the time drunkenly ranting about how much better the audiences were in Wales!

"Did you come here to have a good time?" He keeps having to ask. "You still alive out there London?" Maybe he'd just been celebrating a little too hard.

After a failed attempt to get everybody to sit down, and some more drunk ramblings about ordering a pizza with the Domino's app on his iPhone, it takes a crescendo of hits to turn the crowd around, culminating in the predictable arm-swaying sing-a-long that was 'Dry Your Eyes', and an energetic encore that included 'Going Through Hell' and 'Fit But You Know It'. The show closes with an extended crashing crescendo of drums, and the crowds give back some of the love that The Streets have given them over their long career.

It a shame their last show couldn't be with a more responsive crowd of purely Streets fans, but the largest ever turnout at a Freeze festival at Battersea Power Station wasn't because it was The Streets last London gig, but because of the entertainment on show on the snow. Let's not forget the real heroes of this festival are the skiers and boarders who compete for the coveted World Cup titles on offer over the weekend, and London should be proud to be hosting such an event. 

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