For a lot of people, Electric Picnic 2010 was their first chance to see Fight Like Apes on stage. For others who had seen them before, it was a chance to hear songs from new album The Body of Christ and Legs of Tina Turner in a live setting. Whether they were a new Fight Like Apes convert or a long-time fan, there could have been no way they were disappointed with a barnstorming set from the native rockers.
Opening with ‘Poached Eggs’, I wasn’t sure whether this would be one of those disappointments. Since hearing the song first on Nialler9 a few weeks before the album release, it still hasn’t grown on me. It fits with the album, but is still their worst single to date. Luckily, the band got it out of the way early, and everything from then on in was tremendous.
Every member of the band gave it their all. Dressed in matching tracksuits, the rhythm section greatly supported MayKay’s on stage theatrics and Pockets’ relentless energy. The old songs were met with rapturous applause and cheering, but the new songs also won over the crowd. ‘Hoo Ha Henry’ already feels like a classic Fight Like Apes track, while ‘Katmandu’ and ‘Ice Cream Apple Fuck’ felt natural slotted in amongst some of the standouts from And the Mystery of the Golden Medallion.
Descending into the Crawdaddy Stage crowd, MayKay and Pockets used two iron bars as percussion instruments. It was the best home-made instrument since Seasick Steve’s Diddley Bo. There was a lot of interaction with the crowd, and fans were urged to sing along to every single word, and sing they did. Even along to the new tracks. Introducing a surprise cover, they prepared us for the “greatest song of all time”. And their take of Salt n Peppa’s ‘Push It’ sure did feel like it was the greatest song ever,
The best was saved til the end though with ‘Jake Summers’ and ‘Battlestations’ closing the show. Not many Irish bands have released one song as good in the past few years, but to have two this good? Truly breathtaking. One of the highlights of the entire festival. If you missed it, you can catch them at Tripod in November.
(Photo courtesy of Finian Murphy)