With the release of Bombay Bicycle Club’s fifth studio album ‘Everything Else Has Gone Wrong’ on the 17thJanuary 2020 the band have embarked on a UK and world tour.
Luckily for us Bombay Bicycle Club called into a packed out O2 Academy Leeds to deliver a fantastic headline set which got the crowd singing and dancing form the start.
First up on stage was Liz Lawrence who delivered a fantastic set full of interesting drumbeats and driving guitars and did a fantastic job in warming the crowd up for the main event.
Next up on the stage was The Big Moon who, like Bombay Bicycle Club released a new album earlier this year. This was the busiest I have seen this venue for a support band and The Big Moon delivered a brilliant set getting the crowd dancing in anticipation for the headline act. Based on this short set it will surely not be long before The Big Moon are on a headline tour of their own.
Bombay Bicycle Club took to the stage at 20:15 in their matching white shirts and black trousers and did not waste any time kicking things off with ‘Eat, Sleep, Wake (Nothing But You) taken from their newest album this got the crowd dancing from the off. The Energy levels in fact did not drop for the majority of the set and the band powered through a number of songs taken from across all five of their albums.
With the crowd singing and dancing throughout the energy and excitement was if possible heightened on the occasions Liz Lawrence was brought to the forefront of the stage in order to assist with the vocals as was the case with ‘Feel’.
At around the halfway mark the band slowed things down a touch when again joined by Liz Lawrence they performed ‘Home By Now’. The slow pace of the song allowed the audience a small breather though this was not taken by most as they continued to sing along to the song.
Despite the crowd singing from the start of the show the slow tempo of this song showed with how much enthusiasm the crowd were actually singing along with. Front man Jack Steadman even remarked on this when taking his earpieces out remarking he had not realised just how loudly the crowd were singing.
This lull however did not last long as Bombay Bicycle Club kicked things back up a gear with ‘Cancel On Me’ which is taken from the bands first album which was released way back in 2009. Guitarist Jamie MacColl even remarked that last year marked the 10th anniversary of the album but the band were unable to play a gig in Leeds to mark the occasion.
This performance however more than made up for the missed show last year.
Bombay Bicycle Club continued to have the crowd dancing and singing right to the last song. Tracks ‘Shuffle’ and ‘Luna’ were played back to back which got one of the biggest reactions of the night getting the whole place bouncing.
The band closed their show with ‘Carry me’ and left the stage to a storm of noise from the audience. However as is customary at gigs the band returned to the stage after a few moments and performed the title track from the newest album, ‘Everything Else Has Gone Wrong’. Bombay Bicycle Club then announced that the next song was in fact their last and there was really only one song this could be. ‘Always Like This’ closed the show in magnificent style, ensuring the crowd were singing and dancing right until the end.
After a four-year hiatus with no new music and now live performances Bombay Bicycle Club are well and truly back and the music industry is a much more interesting place for this. The band continue the UK leg of their tour until the 16th February and take things international following this date. Should you get the chance to go and see Bombay Bicycle Club on their tour I would strongly urge you to do so as they are properly back in business and you will not be disappointed.
· Eat, Sleep, Wake (Nothing But You)
· Is it Real
· I Can Hardly Speak
· I Worry ‘Bout You
· Your Eyes
· Lights Out, Words Gone
· Home By Now
· Cancel On Me
· Dust On The Ground
· Good Day
· How Can you Swallow So much Sleep
· Carry Me
· Everything Else Has Gone Wrong
· Always Like This
A capacity crowd at the Leeds O2 welcomed back Mabel on her current sell out UK tour following the release of the ‘High Expectations’ album released late last year, and it’s easy to see why there’s a real buzz about here at the moment.
She’s been nominated for the three Brit awards this year, best female solo artist, best newcomer and song of the year, and if she doesn’t pick up at least one of these awards, then I think we should be referring the decisions to VAR!
On stage at 9:00pm on the dot, and surrounded by 4 dancers throughout the gig, this was an R&B gig of the highest quality. Opening with the banger ‘Mad Love’ she worked the stage like a caged tiger whilst all the time her scarily energetic dancers surrounded here at all times, with their tightly choreographed moves.
It was a predominantly young audience at tonight’s gig and they were only too willing to indulge in call and response and singalongs when Mabel gave them the signal.
Her new album featured heavily throughout the set and whilst this was put together by an army of producers and collaborators, the new material was well delivered by a live band who kept the tunes moving at pace.
‘Finders Keepers’ allowed her to display just how good her vocals really are. R&B live acts can be notoriously dodgy and not afraid to utilise a little ‘autotune’ help from time to time. Mabel doesn’t need any of this, and her voice was strong and powerful throughout the evening.
Throughout the evening she chatted away with the audience and she came across as someone who was genuinely enjoying herself on stage and has complete confidence in her ability to deliver.
A set full of high octane dance tunes was frankly a great way to close of the weekend, and set closer ‘Don’t Call Me Up’ ensured that the crowd went off into the night knowing that they had seen an artist in the ascendancy.
Nominated for Brits awards, and performing at the event itself, 2020 could be a very big year for Mabel, and deservedly so.
Mum and Dad should be very proud!
Remaining tour dates are below, but you may have beg, borrow or steal to get a ticket…
· Mad Love
· Bad Behaviour
· Finders Keepers
· We Don’t Say
· Selfish Love
· My Lover/Cigarettes
· Come Over/Girls Love Beyonce/Thinking of you
· Stckhlm Syndrome
· One Shot
· Put Your Name On It
· Fine Line
· God Is A Dancer
· Ring Ring
· Don’t Call Me Up
‘Top Boy’ Kano called in at the O2 Leeds on his current ‘Hoodies All Summer’ UK tour and the near capacity crowd loved every minute of it.
Kano is clearly a talented fella, as he’s also currently appearing in the latest season of ‘Top Boy’ which is doing very brisk business on Netflix at the moment.
‘Hoodies All Summer’ is his sixth album, released last summer to critical acclaim, it’s a sort of grime, hip hop mash up, and concentrates the every struggles on young black men growing up in the UK.
Tonight’s set featured many track from the new album, but also the inevitable bangers which went down an absolute storm. Accompanied on stage by DJ’s and drummer for much of the set, the overall sound was given a huge kick in the rear end when the brass section arrived on stage, which in itself would be unusual for a dance artist.
But you know what, it actually worked, and they were a genuine highlight of the evening.
P’s and Q’s in particular was an absolute steamer of a tune, and with the addition of the brass section, this metaphorically took the roof off the venue.
Special mention must go to ‘Free Years Later’ from his current album, which for this reviewer was beautifully delivered, has incisive lyrics and was one of the finest tracks from 2019.
His machine gun rap style is at times a sight to behold throughout the gig, and it’s clear to see why he’s at the vanguard of British Hip Hop and still a ‘Top Boy’….
Following the release of his album ‘Armagideon’ in January of this year, Joe Gideon called in at the Leeds Brudenell during his UK tour, and it would be fair to say that this 3-piece band delivered a vibrant set of earthy blues and psychedelia, all delivered with a punk feel.
With Gideon on lead guitar, Jim Sclavunos from The Bad Seeds on drums, and on keyboards multi-instrumentalist Gris-de-Lin, the 3 of them they created an impressive wall of sound.
‘Expandable Mandible’ from his new album showcased what this band is all about, with dark humorous lyrics, underpinned by crashing guitar and thunderous drums, and vocals, they reminded me of early Pink Floyd, (and that is meant to be a compliment by the way!)
Stand out track for me was the excellent ‘Eugene Went Crazy’ from the ‘Versa Vice’ album. Starting with Sclavunos engaging in some serious thigh slapping, this track builds up beautifully with the deep groove feel enhanced by Gris-de-Lin on keyboards, and builds up to a wonderous cacophony of guitars, drums and keyboards and I loved every minute of it.
For me, Joe Gideon is that rare thing in British music, a genuinely gifted and slightly eccentric artist, working with equally gifted musicians, delivering clever warm, darkly humorous songs in a style that has been well trodden, but in this case he and the band have managed to write and deliver tunes that can be appreciated by a 2020 audience.
It would be fair to say that it certainly wasn’t a capacity crowd at The Brudenell, but you know what, with luck and maybe an appearance on something like Later.. with Jools Holland would raise the profile of Joe Gideon and playing to packed houses wouldn’t be far away.
If you get the opportunity to catch this band, grab it with both hands.
You won’t regret it!