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Review round-up: The Strokes at All Points East festival 2023

US band The Strokes delivered a set filled with “crowd-pleasing big-hitters” which ignited singalongs from the crowd as they took to the stage at London Festival All Points East.

NME offered up a four-star review saying that the band started with an “exhilarating triple threat” with What Ever Happened?, Automatic Stop and Last Nite.

All Points East
The Strokes performing at All Points East, Victoria Park, East London (Ian West/PA)

The review detailed how the band had maintained a balance between “filling the setlist with crowd-pleasing big-hitters” but refusing to “get bogged down in nostalgia”.

The music publication’s review referenced what it said had been a “brilliant balancing act, despite sound issues”, adding that the band “have flashes of brilliance” and saying later “The Strokes maintain the balancing act until the very end and once again prove they’re masters of the big festival set”.

Another review from London World described the performance as having a “ramshackle charm” and said that the closing trio of Reptilia, Hard To Explain and Is This It were “great tunes” to finish on.

Vocalist Julian Casablancas, 45, wore a waistcoat and glasses on stage, and as a light display cast geometric shapes and a radar pattern onto the stage he joked about the British weather and said “When did it become winter?”.

A number of festivalgoers had posted on X, formerly Twitter, saying that some vocals were difficult to make out at various points of the show.

But that did not stop groups of fans from dancing and singing along to the hits, with one fan posting a picture of the band on stage on X saying it had been a “cracking show” and was “way more varied than I remember them”.

Another fan wrote: “The Strokes tonight at All Points East were incredible!”.

There were no sound issues reported with other bands during the rest of the day.

A message on X from rock band Stereophonics showed a video of front man Kelly Jones waiting to watch the gig from the side of the stage, with a message that read: “Love love love @thestrokes !! We played shows together over the years! Japan 2003 with @radiohead too wow! Lovely to catch up with Fab and Albert very briefly pre show. Love to all! Real Band! @allpointseastuk”.

Crowds at the festival also heard sets from artists including the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Girl In Red and Angel Olsen at the festival on Friday.

The set from New York band the Yeah Yeah Yeahs was given a four-star review from The Independent who said: “Karen O and the band find room for stillness in between an arsenal of rock-star moves”.

Last week Stormzy performed a “beautifully poetic” set as the rain poured during his only UK show of this year.

The 30-year-old grime star, known for his 2020 Brit performance where he sang on stage in the rain, described his set at All Points East festival as “one of the greatest nights of my entire life”.