Here in this intimate Salford venue, with a tangled mess of wires and boxes on the table in front of him and two live drummers either side of him, stands the husky frame of Dan Deacon, a man, who from behind his jam jar glasses, seems to have a permanent twinkle in his eye. Tonight, Dan’s incredible personality ensures that everyone in the crowd is prepared to dance and to join in the party. He’s the sort of guy who makes it his personal duty to see that no wallflower remains unpicked.

What better music for joyful catharsis than the pounding madness of Dan’s back catalogue. Electronic flourishes whirr and buzz over the top of drums that in their unrelenting nature, sound almost tribal and produce a near hypnotic effect. And of course, Dan uses this sound to his full advantage, akin to a modern day Pied Piper of Hamlin, he directs his audience to follow his every command, and naturally, without question, they oblige. At one point he splits the audience in half and nominates two subjects to stand in the freshly made open space. As chosen representatives of their side, Dan insists that whatever dance moves they decide to pull, everyone in ‘their half’ has to mimic. By the end of the song, no one is left standing still. It might seem a simple exercise, but this sort of audience participation just wouldn’t work without the endless amount of energy that Dan personally manages to squeeze into his live performances. I can’t think of many other artists who’d be able to pull off something quite like this.

But the antics don’t stop there. Having created a smart phone app specifically for his tour, (yes, he is that dedicated!) Dan instructs everyone to pull their phones out and turn the app on. The lights go off, and as the band continues to blast out their tunes, the phone screens react to the music by flashing different colours based on where abouts they are in the crowd. Is it a bit of a silly gimmick? Yes, probably. Is anyone in the audience shaking their head and tutting? Fuck no. Dan’s personality has obliterated any sense of cynicism in the crowd long ago and by this point, it’s just impossible not to be swept up in the fun of it all.

But Dan’s most impressive stunt comes when he manages to get everyone in the audience to pair up and stand opposite each other, clasping hands above head height in a long line, to form what he calls, a ‘human tunnel’. To a backdrop of ecstatic music, the tunnel winds through the entire building, goes outside the venue, enters through the back door and finally, ends up back in the main room again. It might sound childish and stupid, but it succeeds in painting a fat grin on everyone’s face.

Tonight is undoubtedly very special. Through his music and incredible stage presence, Dan Deacon is able to bond together a group of total strangers and at the same time, tightly perform an array of powerful and rousing songs. Perhaps, instead of feeding depressed people pills, we should just send them to Dan Deacon gigs instead. I’m sure it’d work wonders.

I'm Allan, I've had obsessive listening disorder since I was about 13 and now I write about music as a way of helping me cope with that.