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Enter Shikari @ Patronaat Haarlem - Laura Visser

CONCERT REVIEW: Enter Shikari Play Intimate Show In Haarlem

Usually, Enter Shikari thrive in bigger productions, with big light productions and huge crowds, so tonight’s venue is very intimate compared. Serving as a warm-up to their upcoming festival shows, they announced this one headlining show in Patronaat Haarlem two months ago, after having an astronomical night in Amsterdam back in February. 

The evening starts with a very excitable crowd, wondering what might be in the setlist of Enter Shikari for the only full-length show they’ll do in the next couple of months. There’s not much time to speculate though, as the support act Blackout Problems comes on at 7:50 pm, only 20 minutes after doors opened. The German band opened for Enter Shikari on their last tour, and given they have collaborated on a song too, they did a good job in warming up the crowd before. 

During the first song lead singer Mario Radetzky already climbs into the (at this point still slowly filling up) crowd, and this became a regular thing for him during the set. Close your eyes and he’s back at the sound booth in the back, turn around and he’s up on the balcony, and back on stage the next second. The energy the band gives the crowd is happily returned by us, although you can tell the crowd is saving most of their energy for Enter Shikari. After a glittery outfit change for the last couple of songs, they also remind us of their upcoming show in Paradiso in October. With the way they get the crowd going, anyone going to their show will have an amazing time then too. 

By the time Enter Shikari walks on stage, the crowd instantly breaks into a moshpit that doesn’t stop until the show is over. The intimacy of tonight’s smaller venue makes for a crowd that’s elated to be there, as it sold out in mere minutes. Everyone there has been a fan for years, which also makes for a very good energy amongst each other. The vibes are immaculate, everyone is dancing and singing along to every word. 

Enter Shikari @ Patronaat Haarlem - Laura Visser
Enter Shikari Patronaat Haarlem Laura Visser

The visual performances and production quality the fans have gotten used to over the last years are missing for tonight’s warm-up show. With the setlist being mostly overlapping with what they played on their last tour, it almost feels like they took a step back. Nevertheless, the intimacy of this show more than makes up for the lack of lasers and fireworks. The band looks more comfortable and maybe even more confident to perform for this smaller crowd. They’re having a couple of laughs in between songs, and there’s an edge of familiarity to them they usually don’t get to show off that much anymore. After the dance party that is satellites* *, they play the intro of Limp Bizkit’s Break Stuff, showing how relaxed the band is feeling for tonight and their upcoming festival shows. 

The on-stage banter in between a couple of songs and the solo the pressure’s on by singer Rou Reynolds on the balcony, also make for good breathers in a crowd that constantly moves, before they go into yet another crowd-favorite song. A big testament to the band is the way the people everywhere in the room are looking out for each other. There’s a lot of joy to be found from the front row to the balcony as if it’s being passed around by the crowd-surfing fans. The entire floor is swept up into a circle pit the size of the venue by the encore. We are the goldfish, Enter Shikari is the bowl, we are simply under their control, and we wouldn’t want it any other way. Catch Enter Shikari at one of their upcoming festival sets to see if they got warmed up enough at this sweaty show!

Special thanks to Laura Visser for providing us with the images used on this page. You can find more of her work on Instagram right here.

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Christine Mooijer