Boston Manor + Wallflower + Can't Swim // Live Review // 19.11.16

Boston Manor (+Wallflower +Can’t Swim) // Joiners Live Review // 19.11.16

     Picture this: crowd surfing, the stench of cheap tobacco, an aroma of sweat and beer hurtling through the air. Boston Manor’s sold out show at the Joiners, Southampton had the promise of being a good gig before the music had even begun.
Wallflower were the first support of the night and are an alternative rock group from South London. Their sweaty, soft grunge material was a perfect opener to the night. Their shouted lyrics blended into the pop-punky riffs as the crowd bobbed along to the mysterious vibe given off by this 5-piece. Their soft opening chords were bumped into by hard-hitting choruses that contributed to the mature sound they had perfected.
Can’t Swim were the final support for the night and are a rock band from America. One would have never guessed that this was their first time playing in England as this 4-piece just looked comfortable in what they were doing. Their track ‘Come Home’ was their blinder throughout the set. The lyrics were growled in a unique way by Chris Loporto as it was highlighted by the fast-paced drumming and echoed with backing vocals that carried the song through until the end.
A lot of late arrivals were seen flooding through the door to catch Boston Manor. As if the bar wasn’t busy enough, it now became impossible to get a pint for the headliners. The band lingered at the side of the stage with their VANS covered guitar cases as signature light-blubs hung from the ceiling making it look like the set of an early Paramore video. They opened their set with ‘Burn You Up’, and the pop-punk/rock riffs combined with their unbelievable performance immediately put on from each member made Boston Manor impossible to take your eyes off.
They slid swiftly into ‘Lead Feet’ after vocalist, Henry Cox, stated “let’s fucking wake up!” as the crowd then transformed into a gang of moshers and a pit broke out. Each member contributed to the performance in their own unique way ensuring it was a spectacular show. They each had their individual way of playing yet somehow, there remained a consistency throughout the performance and fluidity that is hard to master as a band.  

It’s also safe to say that Henry Cox is a front man that every band wishes they had.

His energy and ability to get the crowd to do whatever he wanted was unmatchable and was mesmerizing to watch- a lot like
Boston Manor’s whole performance. They continued though their set as teenagers ran on the stage and tumbled off into the black, hole of moshers as each confident crowd surfer gasped for air whilst they sunk deeper into the pit.
The revitalizing riffs in each track matched with the dominating drum beat had the crowd going mental; each member bounced around the stage oozing cool as the crowd watched on in true rock-endearment. What helped Boston Manor clasp onto their endearment factor was the fact that they genuinely seemed overwhelmed at the die-hard support from the audience. This was the first sold out show on their first headline tour and each member looked touched by the room being packed out with a sea of fans screaming every lyric back at them. One voice even spoke up proclaiming they were the “best band on the fucking planet” as a smile spread across each member’s face.
After watching last night’s performance, I can see why this is so widely agreed.
Saturday night had all the ingredients of what a gig should be. It was an unbeatable night that was not only down to the band, but the community vibe given off by their fans. The gig was chaos from beginning to end and even saw the bands photographer crowd surfing to capture the true essence of last night. It truly was breath taking.


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