— Editor’s note: According to the Engine Shed, Gorillaz management have requested that no press reviews, pictures or videos are taken during the Lincoln performance. Despite fans being able to take photos and videos, The Linc is not legally entitled to publishing them, hence why the original pictures and videos accompanying this review had to be removed (but they can still be found on the Internet). We are currently negotiating with the Engine Shed in order to obtain better material for our readers in the future.
Gorillaz, possibly the biggest band ever to grace the Engine Shed, visited our humble city as part of their GClub Live tour – and they didn’t disappoint.
The show, on Saturday March 27th, was the last of the six date warm-up shows before moving on to the bigger, more extravagant performances expected of them later in the year at various festivals.
This run of gigs is intended to be much more intimate and they were originally aimed solely at members of the Gorillaz fan club, although the Engine Shed did begin selling tickets to the public after the initial rush.
Judging by the queue outside, the majority of fans in attendance were part of the fan club as the e-ticket line dwarfed the normal ticket holders.
Adding to the intimate nature of the gig, the Engine Shed had been split in half. Even though Damon Albarn, whose family are originally from the Market Rasen area, and his crew could play to much bigger crowds than Lincoln’s primary venue can hold, the 500+ crowd created a much better and personal atmosphere.
With no need for a support act, the band of no less than eleven people took to the stage in sailor regalia.
Walking on to the orchestral intro to their latest album, Albarn and his band, featuring legendary guitarist Mick Jones and bassist Paul Simonon from The Clash, plunged straight into “Welcome To The World Of The Plastic Beach”.
Despite Snoop Dogg featuring on the track, he was not in attendance, but sampled in – along with all other artists whom Gorillaz have collaborated with. Albarn assured the crowd that after a trip to America for some performances with all artists involved, he would return to the UK with them all for some one-of-a-lifetime live shows.
With three albums to choose material from, the set list was nigh on perfect. The first singalong of the night came from “Demon Days” classic “Last Living Souls”. As much as the crowd were dancing and singing, there was never any crushing or ‘moshing’ – more of an overall appreciation of the music.
Smashing their way through such new hits as “On Melancholy Hill”, “Rhinestone Eyes” and current single “Stylo” – Albarn proves that his Gorillaz outfit are just as good, if not better, than they were nine years ago.
Perhaps the best received song from “Plastic Beach” though was the soon to be Summer anthem “Superfast Jellyfish”.
Albarn paid most attention to his “Plastic Beach” and “Demon Days” albums, blasting through fan-favourites “Kids With Guns”, “Dare”, and “El Mañana”.
“Feel Good Inc.” provided one of the most vibrant and energetic atmospheres of the evening, with the whole crowd waving their arms and screaming back the lyrics to the band.
The most special part of the night was when the band gave a sans-vocals rendition of “Sweepstakes”, which culminated in a tremendous whole-band jam session.
As the crowd watched in awe, it was obvious that Albarn was having the time of his life. Smiles all round from everyone on and off stage.
Ending on their first single “Clint Eastwood”, the whole of the Engine Shed were bouncing and singing at the top of their lungs.
A song which has stood the test of time since its release in 2001, it’s still as fresh today as it was last decade — something which Gorillaz are proving about themselves after tonight’s electric performance.
YouTube user xGhostCat uploaded some videos from the Lincoln gig.Tweet