You Me At Six @ Manchester O2 Apollo 31/3/14 ★★★☆☆



The sold out (and fit to bursting) Manchester Apollo is waiting gleefully in anticipation for their unlikely heroes; You Me At Six. Since their beginning in 2004, the Surrey boys have gone from strength to strength; to mega stardom. Tonight is a chance to see them on top form, and to catch their new “Cavalier Youth” tracks live. While that may be the main event; lest we forget about our humble supports.


young-katoFirst up is Young Kato, a six-piece from Cheltenham, who give tonight’s roster a much needed injection of ‘Morrissey’. Even on the first number, lead singer Tommy’s vocal range is impressive, the drums go hard, and the guitars are slammed with a reckless abandon. ‘Ignite’ is Klaxons-eque; eerie and mysterious, and captures the crowds imagination. Young Kato’s style is much more mature than their young ages would have you believe, and they transition seamlessly from songs such as the ridiculously catchy ‘Help Yourself’ to anthem tunes like ‘Something Real’. Their most well known tune ‘Drink, Dance, Play’ ends their fashionable set with all the right ingredients of a crowd pleaser – clapping, chants, guitar riffs to die for and great drumming.


don-brocoSecond act Don Broco were welcomed on stage like they were Jesus’ resurrection. With their incredible energy and talent to match, it’s no wonder the band has such a big following.
From their epic dance numbers to showcasing some of their older heavier material, the crowd were screaming the lyrics back at them like there was no tomorrow. The laddish 4-piece sends the audience into fits of unbridled joy, with their crashing guitars and anthemic sound. Always animated, lead singer Rob Damiani bounces around the stage like a Labrador who needs to pee; but always keeping the performance sleek and controlled. Showcasing the front man’s range is a simple task for their set, as a softer track accompanied by an acoustic guitar gets the audience melting. An instrumental break gives the crowd the final push they need to get well and truly warmed up.


IMG_9140You Me At Six have had nothing but success in their career to date, from chart-topping albums to sold out tours, nothing can stand in their way. So when the semi-transparent curtain drops tonight on the stage, and their neon-lined walkways hold the promise of a show we won’t forget too soon. The huge video screen flickers into life as a woodland scene plays to piercing screams. As the setlist pummels the audience into submission, dancing in the palm of Josh Franceschi’s hand, a sliver of arrogance comes across. Their latest album was made for bigger venues, almost like a screenplay made for the box office. Has some honesty been lost in their maturation?
The first album is barely mentioned anymore, with singer Josh even stating their first tour de force “Gossip” was so embarrassing that he’d “rather someone punch me in the balls, everyday, for the rest of my life, with a sledgehammer, than admit to writing [it]”.

12074316411296807266camera white.svg.medCheck out our photo gallery of this show HERE

New album track ‘Fresh Start Fever’ literally explodes all over the crowd, as a premature ejaculation of silver confetti douses all their willing little faces. ‘Stay With Me’ features a live feed to the jumbotron, creating that stadium-rock vibe. “How the devil are you?” asks Franceschi; “tonight is your night and we’re gonna fucking move”. And move they do, even in the circle of this revamped theatre. Overall, obviously YMAS put on an entertaining show, a feast for the eyes as well as the ears. But a young setlist can rip necessary components out of a gig, making it merely “good”, instead of “spectacular”. You Me At Six leave the audience dripping and dragging their cramping legs from the Apollo, perhaps silently hoping they could have heard “The Rumour”…


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Check out our review of You Me At Six’s ‘Cavalier Youth’ here!