Kaiser Chiefs and horse-racing might seem like an obscure combination, but it made for an adrenalin-fuelled and energetic night of entertainment.
The Chiefs predominantly stuck to their roster of classics, belting out tunes such as Modern Way, Everyday I Love You Less and Less, and Ruby with the same vigour and enthusiasm as when they first graced the airwaves.
Newer material was also trialled out – a particular favourite of mine being their recently unveiled single ‘Falling Awake’, a teaser for their forthcoming album. And the titular song from their LP Education, Education and War also made an appearance, though the slightly older crowd seemed less receptive to this than the golden oldies.
Still, the Kaiser Chiefs proved – not like they have to – the enduring popularity and allure of their music. They’re a down-to-earth man-band of passionate musicians and theirs is brand of music characterised by accessibility, catchiness and political undercurrents. Like a lovechild of The Jam, Pulp and The Specials; they take all the good bits and make it their own. A special, pulpy jam that is chiefly the Kaisers if you will.
Indeed, their stage presence or more precisely, frontman Ricky Wilson’s is what really sets them apart. Wilson bounds around the stage like a puppy on steroids and knows how to entertain a crowd. Sure the band play the anthems, but it’s Wilson who gets you singing and clapping along.
In fact the jubilance with which he prances around and jumps on the sound equipment belies the bittersweet and brutally frank lyrics.
With swagger and satire they continue to march to the beat of their indie-rock drum, and do so somewhat under the radar.
They’re a sly band the Kaiser Chiefs. It’s easy to forget just how good they are.