You don't need us to remind you that the weather on Monday was terrible. The whole day off work and not the smallest bit of sun to be seen. We had it all planned out to stay tucked in bed listening to Spiritualized records until we remembered that we actually had to go outside and trudge through the rain to see them play at Rough Trade East that night. Hard life we have, yeah?
On arrival we were pleasantly greeted with soft ambient sounds floating forth from the speakers, although that calm was not a side of Spiritualized we would see that evening. As soon as the seven-piece band took to the stage, they launched us directly into a thick and heavy haze of guitar swirl. Wearing his signature sunglasses, frontman Jason Pierce looked every bit the rockstar, evoking the same brand of Lou Reed cool that he did all the way back in his Spacemen 3 days.
The band primarily focused on newer material, opening with "Lord Let It Rain On Me" from 2003's Amazing Grace followed by a strong emphasis on material from this year's excellent Songs in A&E. This most recent album sees the band adopt a rougher, less reverb-laden sound, and this primitive rawness came through wonderfully in such a simple space as Rough Trade East. "Death Take Your Fiddle" sent an eerie shiver through us, while the epic version of "You Lie, You Cheat" that closed the night left us hypnotised by its beautiful repetition.
After the gig, Jason and the boys stuck around to sign autographs for the fans, which was especially nice considering it was a holiday and that they must have been aching to get home after a performance as strong as that. We couldn't resist the opportunity to get our copy of their new single signed, so we queued and hoped the rain would pass, resisting the temptation to spend all our money on records. The rain didn't pass, of course, and by the time we got home we were soaked. We could have stayed in bed and had the bank holiday most everyone else had, but then we'd have missed out on hearing one of our favourite acts of all time truly bring their new songs to life.
Image of Jason Pierce taken from daveknapik's Flickr photostream.