Biffy Clyro – Ancienne Belgique, Brussels

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After seeing Biffy Clyro at Pukkelpop last summer, I read that they would be performing in Belgium later in the year. Well, originally it would have been on November 12th and that was canceled due to logistical issues. For me, November 12th wouldn’t have worked anyway since I was going to London that weekend. So at that time, I ordered my tickets to see them in Luxembourg on November 5th and that was what it was going to be.

Then in September, they announced their European tour for February and they were coming to Brussels. So I got tickets and made up for not having seen them before August in half a year’s time with 3 concerts (2 real concerts + 1 festival one).

When we arrived at the AB there was a queue wrapped around the corner of people entering the building, so we went to the end of it and started making our way in. After all the necessary stops (cloakroom, bar) we headed towards the stage. Since this was my first time in the AB, I didn’t know what to expect, but my friend who had been there before suggested we’d go up on the balcony. This was a great idea since it resulted in perfect view and great pictures (plus not being stuck in a mosh pit).

When we arrived the pre-show (Aviv Geffen) was still on stage and now honestly this was not really my cup of tea. From what I read on Wikipedia, he is an Israelian musician. But some his songs just didn’t make sense in how they flowed. This is the first time that I really dislike a pre-show this much, most of the time I find something good. So in my mind “Lonely the brave”, who did the pre-show in Luxembourg will stay the better one.

After about half an hour to 45 minutes the lights went out again and the classical choir song I’ve heard a few times now started. I still find this the best start of their set (I really want to know if this is custom made for them or an existing piece of classical music). Biffy Clyro came on stage almost halfway through this song and stood there as dummies, not moving, until the intro stopped. I told my friend, who had never seen or heard Biffy Clyro before, that this is the start of their show and it will kick off soon now.

Anticipation for the first song building.  But since I have only seen them since Ellipsis was released I have no idea what other song to set off the set with than Wolves of Winter. From here on, it was a rollercoaster of hits from the previous records and the new one. There was also a mix of rock songs and ballads. I really love this in their music, the difference between some of the harder songs and the frail acoustic ones.

I had warned my friend that they have quite a lot of stroboscopes on stage. But when we had entered in the beginning of the evening, I said: “This is not as much as last time in Luxembourg”. I was happy about that, all until we got up to “Glitter and Trauma”, I love this song but it’s notorious for the strobe action, so I had to shut my eyes from time to time. This was also the first time I could see this song in action. I know in the past when I saw taped concerts on TV that I always said: “This I want to see for myself”.

The crowd really was magnificent, singing along with all the songs and the mosh pit was hopping during the faster songs. It was funny to see the mosh pit becoming one big group slow dance with the acoustic/slower songs.

I really enjoyed the location for this show. The AB really has the better sound quality of the concert halls I’ve been to. This time I didn’t need to sit next to the PA to get the best sound in the room. I wish there were more concert venues like this in Belgium. The room was set up in the small way , I still don’t understand that Biffy Clyro doesn’t have more fans in Belgium. But then again a few years back when I was in London with friends and wanted to go to HMV to get the latest Biffy Clyro album they were looking at me strangely when I said the band name.  I try to promote them with everyone as much as I can and will say to everyone that seeing them live is “harder” than the recorded material will seem.

Once again this was a magnificent concert by this Scottish band. Next time they are close to Belgium I am going again!

 

Setlist:

  1. Wolves of Winter
  2. Living Is a Problem Because Everything Dies
  3. Sounds Like Balloons
  4. Biblical
  5. Victory Over the Sun
  6. On a Bang
  7. Opposite
  8. Bubbles
  9. 57
  10. Friends and Enemies
  11. The Captain
  12. The Joke’s on Us
  13. Black Chandelier
  14. Re-Arrange
  15. Medicine
  16. Glitter and Trauma
  17. Mountains
  18. In the Name of the Wee Man
  19. Flammable
  20. That Golden Rule
  21. Many of Horror (“With Aplomb” extended intro)

Encore:

  1. Machines
  2. Animal Style
  3. Stingin’ Belle
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