Amidst a Guinness-filled city break, a trip to Dublin’s Fairview Park to see the 90’s firestarters was in dire need. Following mass trails of heavily pierced fans sporting everything from fishnet to sleeve tattoos, I finally reached bag-search, where tipsy fans attempted to sneak in half-chugged bottles of Corona. Ireland’s stereotypical rain and gusts of wind had finally ceased, leaving only optimism in what was a night to remember for all Voodoo People. The pioneers of Big Beat music were finally back for all to see.
Whilst in the queue for a rather bland, yet does-the-job seltzer, the opening bars of ‘Breathe’ escaped from under the canopy, instantly beckoning fans towards the stage. Hundreds were imminently transported back in time to one of the first sticky underground raves. Armed with tinnies, I sprinted without a moment’s hesitation towards the crowd that already resembled a packed tin of sardines. Each fan stood elbow to elbow, craning their necks to catch a glimpse of their idols.
Burnishing neon lights and laser beams projected across the roof of Fairview Parks’ tent like little molecules of starlight on the ceiling of a Planetarium. During ‘Voodoo People’ a sudden push and shove from those at the barrier indicated Maxim’s presence in the middle of the crowd, the vocalist adorned in white face paint and gothic leather. The crowd ebbed and flowed with each electronic pulse and transition between tracks – hands raised as if attempting to feel every reverberation coming from the stage. With ‘Smack My Bitch Up’ all members of the audience were instructed to get down low in anticipation, only to spring back up with an ecstatic energy at the beat drop.
I was always going to be slightly reluctant about seeing The Prodigy without the presence of the late Keith Flint. But as they say, legends never die. Instead, they simply live on. Flags brandished and waved by hardcore fans read as such. The legacy of Flint could be felt by all – notably with Maxim’s hesitation to sing lyrics that were once his counterparts, in addition to the constant zooming-in of the camera to a Keith doppelganger.
Following a rather deceiving exit from the stage, the band returned for an encore as pleaded for by fans. ‘Out of Space’ marked the end of the performance, placing in bold the band’s ability to stir a crowd, get heads banging and provide feelings of true ecstasy felt deep within the bloodstream.