Review: Example, Capital FM Arena
HE may have a No.1 album and a couple of chart-topping singles to his name but, in this Valentine's week, the London rapper Example still has a bit to learn about romance.
Halfway through his 87-minute set, the 30-year-old declared we had come to 'the romantic part of the show'.
This manifested itself in the form of an invitation for the women in the audience to be hoisted on to any willing menfolk's shoulders so Example 'could have a look at what Nottingham has to offer'.
I'd like to think there was more to wooing than that, but there were plenty of willing takers to his invitation, played out to the backdrop of Watch The Sun Come Up.
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That single, from 2009, marked Example’s first foray into the charts (it peaked at No.19) and was part of a retro-leaning set.
Only seven of his 18 songs (Come Taste The Rainbow, Close Enemies, We’ll Be Coming Back, Say Nothing, Whisper, Let’s Be ******* Stupid and next single Perfect Replacement) were off the deluxe edition of his new album, Evolution of Man.
But the appearance of old favourites appeared to suit the majority of a less-than-full arena.
They were putty in his orchestrating hands from the moment his 2010 No.3 Kickstarts thumped into life on the formidable speaker system.
The standing area immediately erupted into a throng of jumping and mosh pits, while the seated areas were not far behind as a heavily pimped-up Won't Go Quietly ramped up the pace.
See The Sea and a massively elongated version of Stay Awake (one of those No.1 singles) followed as Example urged more energy with expansive arm gestures and the odd expletive.
Soon he was demanding we all grab the person next to us in a headlock as the floor went wild for Midnight Run.
The opening notes of Playing in the Shadows were ecstatically greeted as Example urged the pit to 'give me everything you've got', increasing their mania.
And his continual audience management kept the frenzy whipped up through Under The Influence and a particularly frantic finale to Close Enemies.
The pace barely dropped out front through the likes of Natural Disaster and The Way right through to his second No.1, Changed The Way You Kiss Me.
This spectacular sign-off included a confetti storm and streamers, as the last ounces of energy were wringed from a frantic audience.