Kasabian close curtain on Camden Crawl

While Tim Westwood gets dirty in the early hours

Kasabian close curtain on Camden Crawl

Photographer: Shirlaine Forrest26 April 2009

Taking to the stage lead singer Tom Meighan needed to say little more then a shout of “Camden!” to excite the biggest crowd of the weekend so far.

The Leicester band opened their set with new single ‘Vlad The Impaler’ before whipping the crowd into a frenzy with ‘Reason Is Treason’ and ‘Shoot The Runner’.   

Meighan dressed in a grey, star emblazed shirt looked like an American soccer mum, but fashion tips weren’t the order of the day with many of the mosh pit removing their tops by the time crowd-pleaser ‘Cutt Off’ was given an airing mid-set.

Guitarist Serge Pizzorno’s aggressive guitar work shone through a tight, sweaty headline performance with the group ending with a three-song sing-a-long playing second album lead track ‘Empire’, which raised the atmosphere, before finishing with ‘Stuntman’ and an impassioned version of ‘Clubfoot’.

Early in the evening Scottish rockers The View had warmed up the crowd with Superstar Tradesman’ and new album track ‘Shock Shock Horror’ as well as ‘5Rebeccas’ and ‘Wasted Little DJs’.

The early introductions of all of those tracks made for a lacklustre end to the set.  A three-strong string section, Dirty Pretty Strings, were introduced to the crowd, slowing the pace of the proceedings with fan-favourite ‘Face For The Radio’ receiving the biggest response in the latter stages of the gig.

Second headliners The Maccabees dazzled fans as they previewed new material from their upcoming album ‘Wall Of Arms’ at The Roundhouse. Old favourites ‘X-Ray Vision’, ‘Toothpaste Kisses’ and ‘Lego’ fitted seamlessly into new material ‘No Kind Words’ and set closer ‘Love You Better’ with fine white lights adding to the dramatic feel of the set.

Elsewhere, dance legends 808 State played to a packed crowd at Koko. “Now listen Camden, this is fucking techno,” screamed their frontman before they launched into ‘Time Bomb’, which he claimed was “a fucking classic.” But it was their biggest hit ‘Pacific State’ that really got the masses bouncing with the saxophone wailing through the old theatre.

Earlier in the day calypso ska boys Gold Teeth rocked Barfly playing a very energetic set with singer Joe De Costa jumping into the crowd to dance along to ‘Everybody’.

Fans hoping to see the likes of Golden Silvers in The Black Cap and The Fall in the Electric Ballrooms were left disappointed as queues for both gigs stretched long into the night.

Tim Westwood’s after party in the Jazz Café proved popular with DJ duo Crazy Cousinz wowing crowds with a mixture of funky garage and dancehall beats before The Big Dog took to the decks himself for a hip hop hit happy set and some filthy chat. “My neck, by back, lick my dick and my crack,” the Radio 1 DJ called over the microphone at one point.

Little Boots, Billy Bragg, King Creosote and Die! Die! Die! also played the north London festival.

Our Camden Crawl review and Top Ten New Bands of the festival will follow.

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