First things first, 22, A Million is the Kid A of this generation. With that in mind, it is absolutely necessary to see Bon Iver in their current form. Performing two sets (with a 22 minute interval) at the Hammersmith Apollo with candles adorning the stage, this night was a special occasion – it was intimate and it was homely, despite being just one of their eight shows there over two weeks.
New songs such as ‘10 d E A T H b R E a S T’ and ‘715 – CRΣΣKS’ which are perhaps too experimental (for some) on record are transcendental and evolve into something else in concert, with pitch perfect vocals and slight changes to arrangements. But don’t worry, the older songs are amazing to see live too. With folky singalongs found in ‘Skinny Love’ and ‘The Wolves’, and songs in which the crowd is so quiet you could hear a pin drop between breaths such as ‘Woods’, you’ll experience a mix of feelings seldom seen in a concert, particularly in this day and age of one-note bands, such as Fishcat and the Twattymen.
“The crowd is so quiet you could hear a pin drop between breaths”
There’s lots of headbobbing and even a little bit of dancing in the crowd; a rare sight for a band you’re more likely to listen to while stoned in a dark room with the snow falling silently outside, than in a club or a house party. The highlights were 22, A Million songs ‘33 “GOD”’ and ‘8 (circle)’. Pushing the soundsystem to the limit (and on a couple of occasions, past it) and yet somehow giving me goosebumps in the back of my neck at the same time, those tracks cemented the night as a legendary concert. ‘8 (circle)’ had a massive build up with a beautifully performed trombone solo. It was so good, so magical, it’s probably what summoned the snow to London the following morning.
Bon Iver united audiences and genres with a carefully crafted and passionate show. If, by some miracle, you can find a ticket to a remaining night, seize it immediately. You won’t regret it.
Support Artist: None. Venue: Eventim Apollo. Date: 25th February 2018. Ticket Price: £36.50