Words: Kieran Toms
Live: The Strokes at Dingwalls, London (09/06/10)
About half way through this "secret" gig, I step out of the mass of jumping bodes at the front, and stand a little further back to try and regain some energy. Cool liquid drips onto me from behind. I presume it must be from a spilt drink of someone on the raised level behind me, but am pleased for how refreshing it is. It happens again. I turn round but can see no likely spillers. It happens again, and eventually I realise that sweat is dripping off the ceiling.
Laidback but exuding an unmistakable aura, I imagine The Strokes could appear disinterestedly aloof at a large festival set. But in a tiny sweaty club, their swagger reminds you why they were seen as the most exciting band in the world not so very long ago. And they seem delighted to be back tonight, however cool they try to play it.
The setlist (see above) is amazing. I expected a bunch of new songs, but they just play pretty much all the hits. I think it’s the shock of it that makes it so good. Such was the tiny amount of time between the previous day's announcement of the gig and its actual taking place that I barely had time to get excited. So every now and again during the gig it would hit me anew. That’s the bloody Strokes! Right there! The show flies by amazingly quickly, and the crowd leaves on a massive high, soaked to the skin, but very happy indeed.
The Strokes will be playing festivals and other dates in Australia and the US this summer.