Last night Bloc Party paid Thebarton Theatre a visit. As much as I hated sharing a much loved ‘London’ band with screaming indie attired girls and gangly boys in skinny jeans and even skinnier t-shirts, it was nice to see a few hundred 18-24’s acting their age rather than channeling 37 all before hitting 21. As refreshing as it was to see so many young people in no rush to jump on the mortgage bandwagon that is the preferred lifestyle of choice in this city, it was quite a bittersweet moment for me. It has finally dawned on me that I can no longer consider myself one of those fresh-faced 18-24 year olds.
Kele Okereke was a mesmerizing front man to watch as I triumphantly battled my Sunday evening fatigue (bet those squealing girls weren’t stifling yawns like this fastly-approaching-30 lady was). He’s aesthetically beautiful to gaze up at, with a voice that doesn’t need an instrument to sweeten its sound (although the instruments in play last night did a pretty fine job too). Although Kele’s appearance and voice contribute to his sound ability as a front man there is more at play. His presence on stage is bolstered by a true lack of arrogance. He is not trying to be cool. He doesn’t take himself too seriously. He isn’t sprouting his views on politics, the end of world hunger or third world debt. What Kele is doing is showing his fans just how happy he is at the fact he gets to sing his songs on stage in front of people who enjoy his band’s music.
I’m surprised that I didn’t come away with this same impression after seeing Bloc Party at Glastonbury in 2007. I can only put such an oversight down to the growing mud, the constant rain and the fact I hadn’t had a shower for two days. I was probably concentrating on not falling into the knee deep mud while trying to catch a glimpse of Kele through the drizzle. It’s possible I may also have been distracted by trying to tell myself that was I was still a wide eyed 19 year old. It’s sort of scary nice to know I can now accept my increasing maturity.