Performing to a select number of fans, the iconic Britpop musician filled the 19th Century building with his unique brand of bolshie attitude
The energy was palpable approaching the historic Round Chapel in Hackney on Wednesday 5th June; droves of figures clad in Stone Island, C.P. Company and exclusively adidas sneakers milled around the perimeter of the grade II listed building, champing at the bit for what was to come. The godliness of the venue seemed apt for the main event, with adoring fans serving as modern day disciples for their Mancunian Messiah. Dedicated and raring to see their idol, the masses had congregated hours before the event was due to start – a test of true passion and faith. Eventually, as the clock struck 7PM, the doors to the gorgeous 19th Century building swung open, and Liam Gallagher Live: Presented by adidas Spezial & END. commenced.
The majestic chapel served as the perfect venue for this intimate concert and as the room filled with die-hard fans, the exclusivity of the event began to hit home. With the capacity for only 500 people, this would prove to be one of the most intimate and clandestine gigs Liam Gallagher had played since the early days of Oasis, prior to their skyrocket to stardom following the seminal 1994 album “Definitely Maybe”.
Juxtaposed against the grandiose and towering church organ, the stage was set for a night of true rock’n’roll spirit. As the audience filled the room, the atmosphere was unrivalled with excited conversations ricocheting off the impressive dome ceiling. Suddenly the lights dimmed and an excited murmur rippled through the crowd as five band members filled the stage. With the first chords of “Rock N Roll Star” booming through the PA, lights shimmered, and Liam Gallagher confidently strode onto the stage, engulfed in one of his signature oversized Stone Island parkas. The crowd erupted in a shower of beer, with the icon of British rock musician delivering his patented sneer and no-fucks-given attitude. Sticking to his guns, the legendary Mancunian served up an exceptional combination of swagger and charm, performing with conviction to an audience of dedicated fans.
Firing into an awe-inspiring rendition of “(What’s The Story) Morning Glory”, the younger Gallagher brother performed an ensemble cast of tracks spanning his full musical career. Highlighting the musician’s iconic catalogue, the singer deftly transitioned between Oasis, Beady Eye and his solo work, ensuring that the audience’s appetite for brash and bold sounds was sated. Nimbly manoeuvring through fresh interpretations of classic tracks and infectious new numbers, Gallagher premiered his latest single “Shockwave” to a receptive audience. Primed and ready to take over as a fan favourite, this unapologetically catchy track comes as the first taste of his sophomore solo album, “Why Me? Why Not”, the eagerly anticipated follow-up to 2017’s “As You Were”.
Unfalteringly powerful, Gallagher’s voice filled the Round Chapel with its inherent charm. Taking us through a hand-picked selection of his finest work, from “Soul Love” to “Cigarettes & Alcohol”, the pièce de résistance came in the form of a heartfelt rendition of “Champagne Supernova”. Backed with only keyboard and cello, this toned down take on the riotous track saw Gallagher at his most restrained and subtle – a moment of true artistry and vision, indelible and honest.
Leaving the stage offering a heartfelt thanks to an impassioned crowd, the Britpop hero was gone with no encore. A fitting way to titillate the audience and assuredly signal that this isn’t the end of Liam Gallagher, but perhaps only the beginning. With the release of the singer’s documentary “As It Was” on 7th June, Liam shows no sign of slowing down.