The insider's view: The best gigs of 2007
Our experts reveal their pick of this year's finest live performances...
MICHAEL EAVIS (GLASTONBURY FESTIVAL FOUNDER)
Arctic Monkeys at Glastonbury on the Friday night. It's a really original sound – the poetry of the lyrics is so brilliant and very clever. It's so different to the West Coast American stuff that's so easy to listen to like the Eagles. We caught them at the peak of their career – it's probably the biggest thing they've ever done. They are very polite and so grateful to their audiences. I went to the reformed Sex Pistols after my Buckingham Palace visit for my CBE. That gig was good fun.
CONOR MCNICHOLAS ('NME' EDITOR)
The gigs that gave me the biggest buzz by far was following The Enemy across Reading and Leeds festivals on following days. They were fabulous on the NME Stage at Reading, really visceral and grand and loud and with a stunning audience reaction. The following morning I got a helicopter up to the Leeds site with festival organiser Melvin Benn and got to see the set again. Unbelievably, it was even better, with a constant flow of crowd surfers.
ADELE (SINGER, WINNER OF BRIT AWARD)
At the Astoria. It was amazing to see him go from the Troubadour in Earls Court playing to 150 people in December 2006 and then playing to 2,000 people in September.
TIM VIGON (MANAGER OF THE VIEW)
My favourite gig that I went to this year was The Verve at the Roundhouse. I had the privilege to work with them around their Urban Hymns record and had heard them play many times and seen them as a fan. So I was very nervous about them coming back. But they looked and sounded like they'd never been away. They're one of the best bands that Britain's ever produced. Nick McCabe's the best guitar player I've ever seen.
CERNE CANNING (MANAGER OF FRANZ FERDINAND)
At the O2 Arena, Prince managed to transform an enormous venue into a club like atmosphere by sheer charisma and talent and great backing players and dancers. I had seen him once before, at Wembley Arena on the Lovesexy tour, again with a great band, but I thought Prince felt more comfortable as an entertainer this time round. I also had the enviable honour of Jason Donovan singing along to the show in my right ear.
GUY GARVEY (SINGER-GUITARIST, ELBOW)
Probably my favourite gig of the year was Vetiver at the Summer Sundae Festival. They were astonishing, I really loved it. I'd not heard of them before.
SCREECH LOUDER (DRUMMER, THE LONG BLONDES)
At the Red House in Sheffield. We'd just got back from touring and I hadn't been out in Sheffield for ages. It was a really loud punk gig at a tiny pub.
The best gig I went to and also took part in was the Africa Express gig at Jamm in Brixton. The project is organised by Damon Albarn with the aim of bringing Western and African musicians together. It ended up as an amazing jam session.