2013 belonged to two brothers, known to their parents as Guy and Howard Lawrence, but known to the world as thrilling electronic duo Disclosure. Their incredible debut album Settle went to number one in the UK, they had a number two single with the Aluna George featuring ‘White Noise’, they pretty much ruled the festival circuit, were nominated for four Brits (bizarrely they didn’t win a single one), and even bagged a Grammy award nomination for ‘Best Dance/Electronica Album’ over in the ol’ U S of A. Yes, 2013 was quite the year for the brothers Lawrence, and they’re still only about 15 and 16 (they’re actually 23 and 19…NINETEEN!)

 Tonight sees them play the first of two sold out shows at Manchester’s Apollo, and the young crowd in here tonight are definitely ‘up for it’. It’s raucous in here, and they haven’t even stepped on stage yet. It’s not often I go to gigs and feel old, but this place is packed to the rafters with students, and everyone here is up for one thing and one thing only: having a blast and dancing their ass off. When Guy and Howard take to the stage, the noise is deafening. Everyone is screaming and cheering at the stop of their lungs and it’s the loudest appreciation for a band I’ve heard in a long time. They launch straight into recently remixed single ‘F For You’ featuring non other than Mary J. Blige, who disappointing doesn’t make the trip to Manchester but is represented on inventive screens behind the lads, banging her vocals out like it’s the early 2000s. It’s a sign of their utter confidence that they can lead off with such a huge tune, but when you’ve got the songs they’ve got in your armoury, every song is huge. They segue straight into ‘When A Fire Starts To Burn’, and the crowd lap it up, hands in the air, feet off the ground, the Apollo is positively shaking.

Taking a rest from their debut album, they turn the venue into a proper night club with three back to back vocal-less bangers in ‘Boiling’, ‘Tenderly’ and ‘Flow’. It’s here when you notice how great their set up is on stage for an electronic duo. So often ‘dance’ acts can be a bit tame live, just two people twiddling nobs behind a desk, but Guy and Howard play guitar, live drums and add the odd vocal too, and they’re mesmerising to watch, two incredibly talented guys making brilliant music. The lights are great too, from seizure inducing strobes to their signature white line faces that pop up on the screens throughout the night, there’s always something going on to make watching interesting.

Pretty much all of Settle is given an outing, with ‘White Noise’ and ‘You & Me’ getting huge reactions from the enraptured audience, full on bouncing mosh pits going off everywhere. It’s the final two songs that really tip everyone over the edge though. First up is the beautiful ‘Help Me Lose My Mind’, featuring London Grammar’s Hannah Reid (again, absent but represented by one of the line drawn faces on the screen throughout), which might just be the highlight of a wonderful set. But they save the crowd favourite for last, the behemoth that is ‘Latch’ featuring the vocals of soon to be massive superstar (if he isn’t already) Sam Smith. The crowd go absolutely wild; in fact ‘wild’ is probably too tame a term, everyone goes fucking mental, jumping up and down and throwing as many shapes as humanly possible, it’s a joy to be in the midst of it. With that, the brothers depart (after taking a photo of the crowd for posterity), no encore, no milking it, they just leave knowing they have given the crowd everything they could have wanted. It’s been properly brilliant, and on this showing they should be ruling the world after 2014…it’s theirs for the taking.

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