What an absolute scorcher May was, and we're not just talking about the weather! We had a Royal Wedding, two bank holidays, hundreds of live shows and festival season well and truly kicked off. Here's a round-up of all our favourite moments from the month gone by.
Of all the comebacks to happen in 2018, Plan B wasn’t one we expected, but one that we are most definitely happy about. Taking to the O2 Academy Brixton stage the day before the release of his new album, Heaven Before All Hell Breaks Loose – this was a new, redefined Plan B, suited and booted with a more mature presence. His set certainly matched the crowd, which was a huge variety of ages, genders and music tastes. There were snippets of his original grime material (‘Kidz’) as well as a healthy dose of soul from the Strickland Banks era, and even the newer material such as ‘Guess Again’ was performed with an immense amount of energy and passion. For an artist who grew up in the East Ends of London, this performance was a huge celebration of his career and what’s still to come.
British band, Marmozets came soaring back into fans’ lives with new album, Knowing What You Know Now earlier this year and it’s barely left the stereo in the O2 Academy Oxford office since. When they hit the venue as part of their headline tour, most of the team were front and centre for their set, joining the hordes of fans ready to get messy and sweaty to the full-throttle anthems that Marmozets so easily deliver. To no surprise, the band put on an incredible show, cementing themselves as one of the standout rock enterprises in the UK.
Techno legends Scooter, fronted by the effervescent H.P. Baxxter, returned to the UK for two very special shows at O2 Academy Brixton and O2 Academy Glasgow this month, and it’s fair to say that their performance was quite the party. With strobe lights and pyrotechnics galore, the set was like an all-night rave crammed into an hour and a half. Throwing in a Scooter x Status Quo mash-up, as well their wold-famous hits, ‘Jumping All Over The World’ and ‘Ramp! (The Logical Song)’, their performance well and truly summed up their 25-years in the industry, and here’s to many, many more.
The standard hour and a half set isn’t how Machine Head do things. Their headline tour throughout May saw the metal titans play for three hours solid and boy was it good. Kicking things off like a punch in the face, they blasted into ‘Imperium’ before continuing through their sweat-drenched performance. Cramming in as much of their back catalogue as physically possible, including tracks from the recently released full-length, Catharsis, there wasn’t a moment where the crowd were stood still, and one thing is for sure, ‘Davidian’ still 100% rips live.
See more photos from the night, here.
What a homecoming this was. Many have seen Blossoms perform in some of Manchester’s smallest venues on their rise to the top and it was those same fans (and then some) who sold out O2 Apollo Manchester within minutes. The sense of pride in the room on the night was incredible, with members of the band’s family and close friends also experiencing all that the band have achieved. The crowd went absolutely wild for their favourite tracks and new album, Cool Like You received just as much praise as their debut. Despite this being their biggest headline tour to date, there’s no doubt that Blossoms will be dominating even bigger stages in their hometown very soon.
Every now and then, a club night comes to town which creates such a buzz that people are counting down the days until it arrives. Born in LA, Emo Nite has now taken over cities across America and it finally made its way to London for a pre-Slam Dunk Festival party. With a huge line-up of guest DJs, including members of PVRIS, State Champs, Creeper and more, hundreds of emo lovers filled O2 Academy Islington to sing their hearts out to the songs that soundtracked their teenage years.
GOT SOUL CHOIR
Something a little bit different, but magical all the same, was the Got Soul Choir at O2 ABC Glasgow. The night was filled with uplifiting vibes, provided by the endless disco and soul tunes performed by the group, who are all Glasgow natives. Joined by Sherlene Hector of Basement Jaxx, the performance ended on a rendition of ‘We Are Family’ which truly sent a united spirit around the room, highlighting the choir as a special part of the Glasgow music scene.
Danish metal was on the menu for O2 Ritz Manchester, with Volbeat stopping by for a night of pure riffs and sing-a-longs. Packed to the rafters with hardcore fans, all egos were left at the door for this show and it wasn’t unsurprising to see people with their arms around each other, jumping in unison and singing at the top of their lungs.
Indie three-piece DMA's have made quite the impact on UK crowds, ever since the release of debut album Hills End. Armed with the follow-up, For Now, the trio set about performing it to as many people as possible and their set at O2 Academy Birmingham was an absolute triumph. From the very beginning the atmosphere was electric, with the band oozing confidence and working the crowd with ease. The sing-a-longs were loud and carried on after the band had left the stage and well into the night, so we apologise to our neighbours.
Following not one, but two venue upgrades, Scottish troubadour Gerry Cinnamon certainly received a warm welcome at his debut Liverpool show. Influenced by some of the best in blues and rock, Gerry has earned himself an impressive following and his live performances are enough to show you why. With people clambering on each other’s shoulders, the biggest sing-a-longs you’ve ever heard and a united party spirit, it was one of the rowdiest sets O2 Academy Liverpool has ever experienced.
May saw festival season kick into gear with the likes of Slam Dunk, Dot To Dot and Hit The North all giving us thoroughly enjoyable weekends and with the summer upon us, we're gearing up for spending much of our time in the field. Understandably, Reading and Leeds Festival is high up there on the ones we're excited for, so to get you (and us) in the mood, we put together this guide to who's playing and you can check out our playlist below.
Don Broco - 'Come Out To LA'
Rae Morris - 'Someone Out There'
Lewis Capaldi - 'Rush'
Neil Hilborn - 'A Place Where Someone Loves You'
nothing,nowhere. - 'Hammer'
Shame - 'One Rizla'
The Magic Gang - 'Take Care'
Tom Grennan - 'Sober'
Spring King - 'Animal'
The Night Cafe - 'Turn'
The Used - 'All That I've Got'
Nines - 'I See You Shining'
Hudson Taylor - 'Run With Me'
MIST - 'Wish Me Well'
Ms Banks - 'Come Thru'
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