Review: Groove Armada's last ever UK show was a Superstylin' homage to 25 years - Features - Mixmag

Review: Groove Armada's last ever UK show was a Superstylin' homage to 25 years

Ralph Moore reports from Cornwall, as one of electronic's biggest success stories (allegedly) throws in the performance towel

  • Words: Ralph Moore | Photos: Matt Hawkey
  • 6 September 2022

Was last Saturday’s show the final-ever ever UK show by Groove Armada as a fully-fledged live band? “Yes, it was!” says Tom Findlay when we catch up the week after their glorious last stand in Cornwall for Live At Scorrier House. “We have a tour of Australia and NZ in November and then that’s it.”

What a way to close out twenty-five years of Groove: playing to thousands of fans young and old on the grounds of a beachside stately home on the far edge of the Cornish border. The duo have enlisted trip hop mainstays Morcheeba for warm-up duties, while Massive Attack legend Daddy G and DJ Indian Man are playing jump-up jungle in a forest on the edge of the estate at an afters that resembles the best of Houghton, just with oodles more nineties jungle.

If anything, that blistering two-hour set from Indian Man (think Urban Takeover’s remix of The JB’s ‘Jungle Brother’ and ‘Supa Sharp Shoota’ for starters) in the woodland sets the tone for the midnight hour and the crowd couldn’t be happier to be lashed with syncopated percussion and deeply pliable basslines beamed in from 1998. It's a blast.

Read this next: Andy Cato sold the rights to Groove Armada catalogue to buy a farm

But let’s close out with a tribute to British duo Groove Armada, who not only play all the right records in all the right places (‘Easy’, ‘Paper Romance’, a raucous, souped-up take on ‘I See You, Baby’, the trombone-driven Balearic classic ‘At The River’ and a mosh pit-approved Superstylin’ at the very end) but who also bring superb dancefloor energy and lasers to their headline set at Scorrier House.

In part of a celebration of the new album, 2020’s ‘Edge Of The Horizon’, this full band set features three key vocalists (the stylish Saint Saviour and Basement Jaxx favourite Veba among them) as well as Andy on occasional bass and Tom on keys but if you thought this was going to be a bit tame, think again.

Read this next: Lifting the curse: Houghton Festival is finally back and bigger than ever

Hyper-powered Superstylin’ vocalist MC M.A.D., AKA Mike Daniels, presence alone ensures that fans young and seasoned will have duly updated playlists with jams hot and chilled from their discography this week: that particular song really is the gift that keeps on giving.

Mixmag suggests they put the feelers out to Underworld for 2023 and secure them while there’s still time. See you again soon, Cornwall…

Ralph Moore is Mixmag's Music Director, follow him on Twitter

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