The National Live Review
iTunes Festival - London Roundhouse 10/07/10
With an audience finally starting to grow to a size more fitting to their critical standing, The National made a triumphant return to London on Saturday night (10 July).
Rather than a radical departure, their fifth and latest album High Violet has instead crystallised and refined the band’s sound, with their live show featuring the same assured confidence throughout.
Boosted by a two-piece horn section and multi-instrumentalist Padma Newsome, the Brooklyn based band are a formidable live proposition, capable of mixing churning flurries of power with moments of poignant delicacy.
Frontman Matt Berninger repeatedly roamed out into the crowd, even scaling the bar during a rousing Mr November, but somehow managed to stay the right side of Bono-esque grand gestures while still holding the attention of the rapt crowd.
Highlights of the night included Slow Show, perennial favourite Fake Empire, a riotous Abel and a rousing, singalong take on recent single Bloodbuzz Ohio.