You Me At Six @ The Big Top Luna Park, Sydney NSW Australia 23/09/2017 written by Brendan Lewis.
Welcome Night People and Underdogs! You are embarking on the electrifying, high-power journey that is the first headline You Me At Six tour in three years, for the release of their latest killer musical shockwave ‘Night People’! Next stop on this trip is at Sydney’s Big Top in Luna Park, get ready, for this band have been voted the best live band in the UK and rightly so. Judging by previous reviews and ravings, you may experience thrills, excitement, heart-flutters and a surge of adrenaline, but one thing’s for sure, we’re in for one hell of a ride!
The band emerge onto the stage to screaming applause, and said screams of affirming excitement grow louder when the audience realises the band aren’t wasting any time, and start this journey off with slower blues-rock sounding track off their latest album, ‘Spell It Out’. Let me spell it out to you, this song starts off quiet, emotional and suspenseful which doesn’t suit the needed characteristics of an opening song of a high-velocity concert. However, with knowing the song as it is on the latest album and with lead singer Josh moving around the stage sending his incredibly accurate powerful voice that’s mixed perfectly and sound crisp and crystal clear, I’m filled with suspense, and feel like something big’s coming! Here it is, the song explodes to its full climatic energy with Dan on drums beating away heavily, plus the whole band rocking out sending the velocity sky-rocketing, setting the precedence for the night and spawns an eruption of applause from us fans!
Next stop is biting edgy rock hit ‘Bite My Tongue’, holding the previously peaked energy perfectly. Josh plays with the audience’s energy, pausing his singing at intervals to let the crowd sing him into the next line, which is unfortunate as there’s a girl trying to sing whilst screaming at the top of her lungs, sweetheart, it really sounds like you’re trying to sing whilst getting a limb slowly sawed off by the grim reaper. As if Josh hadn’t revved up the crowd enough for this power-punch of a hit, he talks to and riles up the crowd building the energy leading into the bridge of the song that features Josh showing off some cookie-monster like growling vocals. This ride just crept up in speed something fierce!
Again without a pause, the band head into one of my personal favourites ‘Fresh Start Fever’. This song sees Josh move up close to us here at the front trying to ignite the fire in the crowd, which is successful as the crowd are all singing along to the lyrics in the bridge and after Dan on drums pauses for a second before bringing in the final chorus, the fire is lit and the whole crowd around me jump in perfect timing with the beat. Apart from the in-sync jumping, the crowd are rather tame and not how I remember this show to be like at the bands last headline show, I mean since the last time three years ago I’m only slightly less young, but still just as stupid as I ever was!
Next up is crowd favourite ‘Lived A Lie’ followed by also loved hit ‘Loverboy’, I’m gearing myself ready for the onslaught of crowd surfers flying over-head that ‘Lived A Lie’ typically brings. Both these songs demonstrate perfectly clear and accurate sound, with all the sounds in the music being even and clear not just one or the other. The band feed off the audiences positivity and all rock out fiercely on stage while we all sing the anthemic chorus of ‘Lived A Lie’ creating a strong energy loop circling between the band and us in the crowd, and surprisingly, no crowd surfers thank god! This high-voltage energy was continued for ‘Lover-boy’ with us in the crowd still singing along to every word, plus singing the melodic hook of the song to echo with the bands sound. This song also beckons the first clap-a-long from us in the crowd, adding to the bands energetic movement on stage.
I’m now coming to realise, that if the lead singer of AFI who I reviewed two weeks earlier and described his energy as like a monkey on speed, then what the hell are these wild chimps on stage on?!
After a long dramatic finish to the last song, the band unleash ‘The Swarm’ and then keeps the energy at a white-hot blaze for ‘Swear’ off the bands latest album. ‘The Swarm’ gave birth to a mass of fist pumping from the audience being revved right up by Josh egging us on during the bridge section, where is ‘Swear’ was just as high energy from the band, yet contains a lessoning of the crowds energy. This may be due to this awesome song being still young and not previously road tested with Aussie fans, or perhaps its due to the solid boring lights in this song, un-like the previous wild ‘all over the place’ lighting beforehand?
Never the less, the audiences enthusiasm is brought up once again but in a different sense for the heart-felt declaratory out-cry that is ‘Give’. The audience around me burst into cheer at this newly loved hit, and if I’m not mistaken, sees the piano melody in the song being replaced by guitar, which is smart, as this way the live sound is still authentic to the recorded sound and isn’t absent of the songs powerful emotion-emphasising melody.
The band now take a second to catch their breath, and thank the audience and chat to us questioning why some of the guys in the crowd are undressing, acknowledging the guys in the audience taking off their shirts like totally hardcore bosses they apparently see themselves as, before many mens shoulders play host to the girls around them now sitting on said shoulders for classic heart-fluttering track, ‘No One Does It Better’. This song gives a nice contrasting energy to the set with Josh waving his arms to us in the audience conducting our sing-a-longs, before Josh calls to us Night People for the next song…
‘Night People’ is up now, which the audience fall calm yet again despite us all singing along to this new catchy hit, even as Josh engages us with a “You still with us?” during the song , plus Josh alternating a note in the chorus from a loud clear note to a scream to spice things up.
Next stop on this ride is ‘Cold Night’ with the band showing off crazy levels of energy, with all the girls in the crowd… and me, screaming at, singing and jumping to this love song, before the bands latest single ‘Take On The World’. This song is sure to be one of the bands greatest hits, with the deafening scream from the audience especially the female portion, and the venue being littered with mobile phone lights recording this song, and adding a glowing ambiance, making it as if the band are the world they’re taking on, beneath a starry night sky. All the sounds are crisp and sharp, especially Josh’s powerfully enticing vocals, added with the band building up to the bridge and home stretch of the song with the audience singing the melody to, resonating the sound throughout the venue, it sends shivers down my spine. This would’ve made a superb finishing song to the set but there’s still one more…
After telling us that the band normally hate sloppy love songs like that (referring to Take On The World) and have a laugh spreading some humour, the show is closed surprisingly with an acoustic rendition of ‘Too Young To Feel This Old’ (this is totally my song). As incredibly powerful as Josh’s voice is in this song and stands out even more being an acoustic song, surely this soft track isn’t the finale to the show?
Of course not, after a quick breather, the band are called back on stage for the real crowd pleasing hits of their back catalogue, classic anthem ‘Stay With Me’ with some killer guitar melodies and euphoric sing-a-longs, followed by up-beat power-house ‘Reckless’, classic poppunk heavy-weight ‘Underdog’ and finally, ‘Room To Breathe’. All of these incredible rock hits feature mass sing-a-longs from us in the audience, insane energy from the band on stage conducting our energy in the audience, the return of wild lighting and feature crowd surfers galore in ‘Room To Breathe’ thanks to Josh encouraging it… why do I have to be standing right in the front middle of this crowd right now? The band thanks us once more before leaving the electrified fans behind (not literally), thus closing the show leaving all us fans wanting more!
I disagree with these guys being voted the best live band in the UK, no, I’d say they’re one of the best live bands in the world. The bands incredible sound was mixed perfectly with all aspects standing out in their own right and not drowning out one another, and the show was a continual looping circle of massive energy between the band and us in the audience! Good on ya guys! I can’t wait to catch another one of your shows in the, hopefully near, future!