If this was meant to be a rawkus carnival-style party, well, it was probably missing a few things.

Yes, Rudimental's first full New Zealand show - after a simple DJ set at last year's Rhythm & Vines - had plenty of high-energy dance hybrid thrills.

Try Baby's summery vibe, which came with huge trumpet riffs, singalong choruses and co-ordinated dance moves as the UK band's nine-members moved as one across a stage surrounded by banks of lights.

Or Right Here's hard house throb and bruising breakbeats that served as an early highlight for Vector Arena's surprisingly up for it Tuesday night crowd.


But there were too many moments where Rudimental's crew appeared to be having a better time than those watching on.

It didn't help that some of their mashed-up medleys - many of them expanded songs from last year's album Home - lost focus while trying to cover as many facets of the dance spectrum as possible, with dub, reggae and occasional hip-hop moments thrown into the mix.

And a laid back song like Spoons could have come straight from a late '90s cafe soundtrack, also featuring Groove Armada and Basement Jaxx.

Rudimental were much better when crafting fully blown party starters, like the drum 'n' bass antics of Original Nuttah (a Shy FX cover), or the filthy dubstep squelches that lifted Not Giving In's feel good vibes into a soul-drenched stand out.

Of course their No. 1 hit Feel the Love was saved as a main set-ending thriller, delivering the night's biggest hand-waving, foot-stomping anthem.

But after seeing the kind of global dancehall cacophony Major Lazer ignited the Big Day Out with earlier this year, Rudimental's set just felt a little flat.

Perhaps it's that they've only got one album to their name. Maybe it was because it was a Tuesday night. But a few glitter cannons, beach balls and vuvuzelas could have gone a long way.

Where: Vector Arena, Auckland
When: Tuesday, March 4