Review Yusuf And Friends Shepherds Bush Empire 2009: Welcome Yusuf

Review Yusuf and Friends Shepherds Bush Empire

Welcome back, Yusuf.
Funny thing happened in Shepherds Bush last night. A bunch of otherwise normal looking, averagely-40 something year-olds became embarrassingly emotional. En masse. It was billed as a concert but was more like an audio-group-hug. For last night saw the return of Cat Stevens, , to the London music circuit. He’s back folks, and if anything better than ever. The gig was part of , which comprises a week of pretty impressive line-ups (although we can only keep our fingers crossed that Amy comes through for them on Sunday night). The evening kicked off with what we took for a regulation warm-up band – – playing, well, “music designed to be infectious on the level of the subliminal harmonic brainframe”. Quite. Good stuff actually, but a bit grungey for us. Turns out that lead singer Yoriyos is actually Yusuf Junior. Yup, it was a family evening. Next up was the inimitable . Songs of sunshine and faraway places. Party time. Bongos, and dancing – and that was just the audience. He has a new album (Television) coming out, and to celebrate he did his encore with a few surprise guests – U2, no less. Just love it when you get more for your money at a concert rather than less. Bono paid tribute to Maal’s work for charity in Africa, and they went on to bring the house down with a cover of Bob Marley’s One Love. Rather than buy a cheesey mix of re-hashed Summer oldies this year, do yourself a favour and grab a copy of Maal’s album – it’ll stir you in ways that you didn’t know existed.
Londonist was far too excited to take photos, and so thanks to Jamie for obliging.

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