Circa Waves at Glastonbury Festival 2014 review

"A setlist ripe for the indie disco"

Circa Waves at Glastonbury Festival 2014 review

Photographer: Peter CorkhillChris Eustace on 28 June 2014

Circa Waves are an eager bunch – the Liverpudlian quartet bound out onto the Other Stage like dogs that have just been let out of a car, launching straight into an effervescent ‘Young Chasers’, and the charm offensive continues with ‘Good For Me’, coming off like the best song off ‘Up The Bracket’ you’ve never heard.

Even if the band’s sound hinges on the sound of early 00’s indie – The Strokes, The Libs, and, going a bit later into the decade, ‘Whatever People Say I Am…’-era Arctics, there’s still some layers to the songs – their perky pop tunes hide lyrics full of self-doubt and frustration, as Kieran Shuddall laments “I want something I just can’t get” in ‘Fossils’, while a new song from their forthcoming debut asks “Am I too young to keep this going?”


Shuddall’s developing as a frontman too, celebrating a temporary break in the Worthy Farm downpour (“It’s not rained for five minutes!”) and jokingly introducing a special guest spot from Metallica’s James Hetfield, turning mock-crestfallen when it turns out he’s stood them up.

The catchy likes of ‘Stuck In My Teeth’ and ‘Get Away’ probably wouldn’t make it onto ‘Master Of Puppets’ anyway, but ‘Is This It’ or ‘Room On Fire’ would have found them a good home, and just when you bemoan a slight lack of light and shade to their frantic indie thrashings, along comes a yearning ‘My Love’. Boasting the most memorable chorus of the lot, it could well become their calling card down the line.

Widely touted at the start of the year, Circa Waves face having to prove themselves for the entirety of the festival season, but with a setlist ripe for the indie disco, they’ve passed perhaps the biggest test with flying colours. They might not be re-inventing the wheel, but they’re very good at making it spin around.

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