Milburn @ O2 Academy Sheffield
The O2 is like an indie kid reunion tonight; it’s the classic 90:10 male to female ratio, there’s the preemptive chants of “Yoorrrkkshiiireee” rippling through the crowd and the floor is already littered with plastic pint pots as Tuborg is thrown back with mighty finesse. Everyone may be a bit bigger, beardier (or baldier in some cases) but there’s a definite sense of regression back to those carefree mid-noughties nights out with ‘the lads’.
And the band know that’s exactly what these four nights are about. Beginning with their debut album opener (released a decade ago this year! who else feels old?) they launch into ‘Well Well Well’ and continue with a setlist of ultimate crowd pleasers. ‘Send In The Boys’ quickly follows as crowdsurfing ensues and fully grown men pogo about the dancefloor singing along to not only the words, but each guitar riff too – a staple of any good indie song circa 2006-7.
The band themselves are sounding better than ever; Joe Carnall’s vocals have matured and Louis Carnall and Tom Rowley sound as tight as ever on guitar. It’s a far cry from a rusty reunion and it’s clear they’ve put in a decent amount of time and effort in preparing for the weekend.
The setlist covers almost every back catalogue anthem as ‘Showroom’, ‘Lipstick Licking’, ‘Brewster’, ‘Lo and Behold’ and ‘What Will You Do’ are smashed through, with the audience so loud during ‘Cheshire Cat Smile’ that Joe leaves us to it for the last few lines. Naturally, the encore involves a lovely acoustic rendition of ‘Roll Out The Barrel’ before finishing on ‘What You Could’ve Won’, giving everyone that warm fuzzy nostalgic feeling that they came here for.