Mumford & Sons enchant the O2 Arena with an inspiring performance
In a sold-out O2 Arena, Marcus Mumford, Ben Lovett, Winston Marshall and Ted Dwane take to the stage playing their comeback single Guiding Light. The audience, properly warmed up by opening act Maggie Rogers, is instantly in awe of the frontman’s spellbinding baritone vocals, and the interaction between them and the band is heightened by the stage’s clever layout; positioned in the middle of the arena, crosswise, it brings the four-piece closer to both ends of the venue and the tiered seats to the sides.
Since their debut, Mumford & Sons have gone through an impressive process of transformation and refinement of their sound. The first major evolution came with James Ford on Wilder Mind, but it’s Paul Epworth’s work on Delta that conferred the band a new level of sophistication and minimalism; these changes don’t come across as forced or artificial, especially thanks to Mumford’s voice, which ensures an organic continuation. It has to be said, though, that the transition between banjo-driven pieces and those with electronic influences sometimes isn’t completely smooth.
While it’s classics such as Little Lion Man, Lover of the Light and The Cave that ignite the crowd, the performance’s quality peaks on the more recent songs Slip Away, Believe, Ditmas and Picture You (played with Epworth himself). Their support Rogers also join them on stage for a delightful rendition of Beloved. However, the night’s absolute highlight comes during the encore with their biggest hit, I Will Wait, before the closer Delta.
Mumford & Sons have managed to mix bluegrass, folk, rock, indie and electronic music in their career, and tonight at the O2 they deliver one of their best performances to date, reaching a balance that pleases new and old fans as well as critics and fellow musicians.
Filippo L’Astorina, the Editor
For further information and future events visit the Mumford & Sons website here.
Watch the video for Guiding Light here: