Skip to main content

21st February 2012

Live: Justice @ Academy 1

It’s impossible not to raise questions about how ‘live’ a performance from 2 men with computers and decks really is.

13th February 2012

Academy 1


Officially speaking, Justice’s debut record, released back in 2007, is untitled; only a glowing, neon version of the band’s trademark cross symbol adorns the album’s sleeve. That it duly became known as (or alternatively, Cross) was fitting. With that release, the French duo became the first dance act since their countrymen Daft Punk to successfully cross over into the world of indie rock and if the amount of skinny jeans on show amongst tonight’s audience is anything to go by, it’s a section of their fanbase they’ve retained.

Taking the stage on a raised platform behind the obligatory giant cross and flanked by two striking walls of Marshall amps, the pair choose to frontload their set with new material from sophomore release Audio, Video, Disco, opening with lead single ‘Civilisation’, which is later worked into a number of tracks as a coda. As with most dance acts, the set is seamless and it’s to the band’s credit that when the poppier big hitters inevitably arrive later on – ‘Waters of Nazareth’, ‘D.A.N.C.E.’ and the commercially-successful Simian Mobile Disco collaboration ‘We Are Your Friends’ – they don’t sound at all out of place next to offerings more deeply rooted in the dance genre.

Whilst there’s no problem as far as crowd response is concerned – the sell-out crowd is worked into a ninety-minute fervour – it’s impossible not to raise questions about how ‘live’ a performance from two men with computers and decks really is, particularly for those in the crowd more accustomed to guitars and live drums. Whilst the light-show – glowing red amps included – is formidable for a venue of this size, it’s hard to shake the feeling that, as entertaining as the evening is, the ‘Justice Live!’ tag might be a tad off the mark.

Justice (live at Manchester Academy)

Joe Goggins

Joe Goggins

Music Editor.

More Coverage

Parklife 2023: What to expect from the dance, electronic, and drum and bass stages

The Mancunion gives a rundown on some of the drum and bass and dance stages for Parklife 2023

Live review: Arctic Monkeys @ Emirates Old Trafford 03/06/23

Arctic Monkeys cement their legendary status with back-to-back bangers on their stadium tour

Dope Lemon rides a Rose Pink Cadillac to Albert Hall

Dope Lemon, one of Australia’s most exciting indie artists, is stopping by Albert Hall as part of his European tour

Live Review: Caroline Polachek at Albert Hall

Caroline Polachek stuns a sold-out Albert in her rescheduled show, touring her second solo album Desire, I Want To Turn Into You.