Live: Fred Again at Islington Assembly Hall

Fred Again is to a millennial anxiety-fueled generation, a composer and visual performer that touches them in a way far deeper than his peers in the most humbling of ways.

Entering his hometown London show and the last of his tour on the back of his Grammy nomination, the crowd were electric. Looking down from the circle into the dimly lit but soldout stalls there was a collective hum of hope, and excitement to finally be able to lose themselves in the songs that had got them through the darkness of the pandemic.

Fred’s audience isn’t a room full of strangers, more than any concert I’ve seen this year it was more like a group therapy session, where the medium of communication was dancing with abandon and singing every word to the stranger next to you and everyone attending had a mutual understanding of being one dance floor and absolutely havin’ it would save them all.

Fred is not a showman and (this is not a slight, this was one hell of a show) his performance was as much ‘real life’ as his album, no self-indulgence or airs and graces. Coming out to a roaring audience; the centre stage is a screen with his signature clips sent in from fans, recorded himself or found of everyday people from all roads of life, that are so recognisably Fred.
Actual Life was the performer and Fred was just the delivery mechanism.
Humble throughout, slightly shy when talking in between songs but so grateful to be able to share his music, with just one other musician on stage throughout and incredible visuals, lighting and infectious energy, it was like he was experiencing exactly what we were with us, every song was an audiovisual journey. He delved deeper into the samples used in his music, breaking down the process in front of our eyes. Many versions of the songs had never been played live in public before or he joked they’d come up with that arrangement that afternoon and the crowd didn’t stand still for any part of it.
Like a house music ‘Ludovico Einaudi’ in a tracksuit, the dancing we lost, was found again.
Put his album on your playlist and don’t walk, run to get tickets to his show.
Written by Lucca Joy

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