Sunday, 21 March 2010

We The Kings / Forever The Sickest Kids / Y M @ 6

-Live at the O2 Academy Brixton, London, 20/03/10


The concert last night was awesome. It really was. You Me At Six were headlining the legendary Brixton Academy, with support from We The Kings and Forever The Sickest Kids.

Fran, Sophie and I went up to London on the train and tube in the late afternoon, stopping at McDonald's at Embankment to eat (the new CBO is goood!), then getting to Brixton. There were quite a few kids on the tube going to the gig - you can just tell - and as we got to the enormous queue, we saw some girls that were on the same train as us, in the middle of the queue. "Whatt?! How did you guys get there?!" We jumped in with them. Apparently their friends were in the queue, and they joined them, so we joined them too! Sarah, Chelsea, Amber, and Kirsty joined us just a little while later, and then the doors were opening. Seriously, crowds will cheer for anything, and we cheering when the doors were opened. Boys and girls got separated, and we got tickets scanned, bags checked, and inside the building... I met everyone else at the merch stand. I wasn't planning to buy a new tee, but then I saw this, and had to get it! It's so cool...

After quick change into the new tee, we dropped our stuff in the cloakroom, had a quick pee, and then went back downstairs to enter the standing area. It was already packed out. We weaved our way forward, and tried to make our way more towards the middle. I think we did a decent job. We were right in the middle of the front section, surrounded by people. Nothing was happening, but it was so hot...

Then, the lights went down for We The Kings, and the loudest bass I have ever heard filled the venue. It was ridiclously loud, and literally hit your body as it blasted from the enormous speakers. It was intense. We The Kings came on stage, and opened with 'She Takes Me High'. They performed a really good seven song set, playing 'Skyway Avenue', 'Stay Young', 'Secret Valentine', 'Heaven Can Wait' and finishing on 'Check Yes Juliet'. Plus, they covered Jimmy Eat World's 'The Middle' after 'Stay Young', which was my favourite song they played. Everybody loves that tune. Here's the band on stage:




Everyone was pushing forward, and the crowd was falling from side to side when they weren't jumping altogether. But it was a good show from The Kings. At the end of one of their songs - I think it was 'Check Yes Juliet', but I can't remember for sure - I was shouting the lyrics as loud as I could, over everyone around me. It was totally out of tune, and out of time for that, but it was so funny... I couldn't stop laughing. During their set, we managed to push our way even further forward, and now we were just five or six people from the barrier. Oh, and this is how disgutingly sweaty we were after the first support band:

Forever The Sickest Kids were on next. I was very excited. Even while we were waiting while the stage was getting set up, the crowd was moving around, pushing, and it was difficult to keep standing up. It was so exciting to see FTSK's famous shiny microphone stand being brought onto the stage. And there was a huge banner saying "FTSK High School! Home Of The Fighting Flamingos". The waiting didn't last too long; the lights went down. FTSK came onstage.

They opened with 'She's A Lady', and I was loving it. They are so good live, and way better on stage than on a CD. Their music is actually prett heavy live. It was good to see them on a big stage, having only seen them in intimate venues, and they were so energetic, jumping all over the place. They went on to play 'Believe Me, I'm Lying', 'Phone Call', 'Hey Brittany', 'She Likes', 'My Worst Nightmare', and closed on 'Woah Oh!'. I was loving the show, and going crazy; I didn't care what anyone else thought of me, I was jumping along to every song, and singing as loud as I could. For the last song, 'Woah Oh!', Jonathan said he wanted to see a huge circle pit in the standing area. I looked around, and saw one guy starting a pit, and went to join him. It wasn't a circle pit, but it was a pretty decent little push pit, and was a great way to end their show.






All of us were exhausted, and on the verge of passing out as FTSK went off stage, so, like many others who had been in at the front, we got pulled out. I was tempted to crowdsurf from further back over the crowd, but in the end, moved forward, helped the girls out, and then one kid let me jump on his back and get pulled out. It was such a relief to finally get out of the pit. It was great to be able to breathe easily, and move about. I found Fran by the bar at the back waiting for me, and then Kirsty found us, and we met up with Amber. We needed water, and we needed to find Sophie, who got pulled out first. We went upstairs to the bar to get a drink, and looked all around the venue for Sophie. Twice. We checked the toilets, every bar, First Aid, and the meeting place we had previously decided on. We couldn't find her. You Me At Six came onstage. I felt so much better after sitting down for a while, and having a well needed drink. But Brixton is the loudest venue I've ever been to - it was incredibly loud when I saw New Found Glory headline there - so as we went back into the standing area to watch the band, I used cotton wool to protect my ears. It's way more comfortable than the ear-plugs I wore when I saw Fightstar. My ears were already ringing from the two awesome support acts, and I'm not into YMAS enough to potentially damage my hearing from watching them. But, they were actually better than I expected them to be.

They opened with 'Safer To Hate Her', 'The Truth Is A Terrible Thing', and 'Kiss And Tell'. Then they went offstage, and the sirens to the beginning of 'The Consequence' began, with red lights filling the auditorium. Now the show was really starting. The crew finished sorting out the stage, and the black curtain dropped to reveal a real set, as they burst into the song. Sean from The Blackout came onstage to join them, and add his vocals at the end of the song. They continued their set with 'Playing The Blame Game', which I actually really like. At this point, we were standing to the right of the stage, on the balcony kinda bit, watching the band and the crowd from a safe distance. I noticed that there was a mum and dad next to us, obviously waiting for their children, and while the man was taking pictures, the lady was sitting on the floor against the wall with her fingers in her ears. I had my ear plugs with me, which I didn't like, and was never going to use, so I gave them to the lady, who really appreciated them. 'Trophy Eyes' was next, and neither Fran or myself knew the song, and Fran wanted to go outside for a cigarette, so I went along with her to keep her company. My ticket was so mangled from being in my pocket - it was ripped and soggy - but I managed to get back inside with it. And I've only just found out now I'm looking at the setlist that I missed 'Jealous Minds Think Alike' while I was outside, and that's a good song! But I did get to hear it when they played supporting Paramore at Wembley. We got back inside, and continued to enjoy the show...

We went back into the crowd towards the end of the show, but didn't even try to get near the front. It was great to be in the mosh pit, jumping and singing to 'If I Were In Your Shoes'. I actually love that song. They played a few more songs before 'finishing' and going offstage. The crowd was chanting "You me at six! You me at six!", and they came back out to carry on the show. It was nearly the end of the night, and as Josh was onstage, he told us how at the age of 15, he said on his Myspace page that by the age of 20, he wanted to play Brixton Academy. He said: "I'm now 19, and I'm playing Brixton Academy." 'Always Attract' was the next song, and it was quite emotional to see Josh standing there, taking in the moment, as the crowd literally sung the song he wrote back to him. Like at Paramore, Josh's sister, Elissa Franceschi joined them to sing the song. It was a really good song. Josh said "If there's someone in front of you, get on their shoulders for this song!" I picked up Fran on my shoulders for the song...

They finished the night with crowd favourites 'Save It For The Bedroom' and 'Underdog'. It was great being in the mosh pit, enjoying the songs and enjoying the moment. Confetti fell from the ceiling at the end of 'Underdog', and the crowd cheered the band. Like I said, they were better than I were expected. It was a really great night. Here are some more pics:




We found Sophie after the show, and found out that she'd passed out as she was getting pulled out of the crowd, and she'd been in the First Aid room out back - not the one that we checked - for 45 minutes at the beginning of YMAS's set. We got out, went upstairs to collect our bags from the cloakroom, and then made our way back downstairs. Fran had gone ahead to meet her dad outside who was picking us up. Just as I was coming back downstairs, I saw Jonathan Cook by the merch stand, talking to fans. I was so excited. I ran downstairs, and made my way over to where he was. I had to call Fran to tell her that I wasn't coming out just yet, but that I'd be out in a minute. I got to talk with him, and Fran called back so she could talk with him on the phone. I asked him, "Can you talk to my friend on the phone?". He took the phone and said "Hey, what's your favourite colour?". I waited for a little while while Fran was excitedly speaking to him, until he finally replied "Cool. So what's your favourite colour?! Mine too..." Hahaha it was funny. Then I got to talk with him, and tell him that I'd seen FTSK at The Underworld, Islington, and The Borderline. He was pretty impressed, and was like "That's sweet!" Then I got to get a picture with him to add to my collection, and took a pic for Amber and Kirsty. It was awesome to meet him again, and was literally better than YMAS's entire show.

It was really great times last night. We said goodbye to the others, and went outside to find Fran. Fran's dad drove Sophie, Fran and myself home, and I got in just after 12.30. I was so tired and my ears were ringing, but I'd had such a brilliant time. It had been an incredible night...

FTSK pwn. End of.

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Random spelt backwards is modnar. (That's actually a pretty cool word...)

I woke up at about half past nine this morning... It was great to sleep in after a late night, and so good to not have to get up for work. I can't remember the last time I had a day off work, when it wasn't to be on holiday or something. It's so good to just relax, chill, and enjoy the day. I could get used to this you know...

I haven't been writing on here much, as you can see for yourself. Believe it or not, I've been working very hard on my A2s. It'll all be over in three months time, and I need to put in a continually huge amount of effort to get the grades I need. It's been good though; I love that feeling of satisfaction and achievement you get after you've been working hard, and have completed something well. It's a good feeling.

I've been wanting to write about the cool events in my life, but everytime I've thought of it, I've thought "Hmmm... Maybe after the party" or "I'll write about everything after the dance." Well, today is the day after the dance, so I'll try and write about everything I can remember. Here goes.

Waay back at the end of February, we had a dodgeball tournament at Super Saturday. It was so immmense. I love playing dodgeball whenever we do play it. It's pretty much the best sport in the world! And there was actually a really good prize, meaning the kids were playing to win, instead of playing only to hear that "everyone's a winner". I really got into it. I was in a team with Michelle, Christine, and Ethan. We talked tactics, and then got into the game. Ok, so we weren't the best, and we didn't win, but we were definately the coolest team there, and played pretty well. I made an awesome catch - you know like in the Dodgeball movie, where they're holding a dodgeball, and then as one is thrown at them, they use the ball they're holding to launch the one thrown at them into the air, before catching it as it falls back down? Yeah. It was great. And as we were playing, I managed to hit a couple of kids in the face with a dodgeball from close range. They were gonna get my team out, so what do you expect?! I did get out quite a lot, and like I said, we didn't win, but it was just so much fun.

For Mutual back at the beginning of March, we went to play laser tag. I hadn't been in agges, and it was so much fun. We played two games that night, and in the first, I came second out of everyone. I was pretty pleased with that. It was fun to just go play for a while. Some kids there were just walking around, shooting someone every now and then, but with laser tag, you've really got to get into it! I was crouching behind walls, staying behind cover, trying to be stealthy, and for the most part it paid off. My knees hurt afterwards. It's always such a disappointment when you get shot, and you have to wait until your gun is ready again. Those few seconds feel like such a long time... But it totally reminded me Barney out of How I Met Your Mother... Legendary.

The next day, I went to the cinema with my family to see 'The Lovely Bones'. I'd been wanting to see it for a while, seeing that Peter Jackson was directing. It looked great. We finally got to go see it on a Orange Wednesday, and sat down to enjoy the film. The first 20 minutes was excellent. I was loving it. The form and style of the production was quite refreshing after the number of action thrillers pumped out of Hollywood. It was really tense, and I was so intrigued. And then, suddenly, it stopped and the screen went blank. Everyone waited for a while, and started chatting. I guess you know how it is. And then you get the natural born leaders getting up to inform a member of staff of the problem on behalf of the rest of the audience. We waited a little bit longer, until someone came in to tell us that the bulb in the projector had exploded, and we all had to go. So, I didn't get to see it, and I still haven't. No spoilers, please. I'll watch it one day...

The next events in our chronology were the Alice In Wonderland World Premiere, and seeing FTSK headline in London for the third time. What an incredible show. They were both awesometimes.

Last Friday, it was my good friend Emma's 18th birthday. I didn't know what to get her, but then I saw this cuddly little dog, that you put in the microwave (don't worry - it was a toy dog), and then you cuddle it in bed. I couldn't resist getting it for her! Haha, she did like it. That evening, there was a huge group of us all went out to eat at a Chinese/Indian buffet restaurant to celebrate. It was such great food, and a really good evening. We all sat down to eat, but then between courses just got up and mingled. It was a formal event, so everyone had dressed up for it. I wore a white shirt and black skinny tie, with a black waistcoat. I felt kinda indie. Haha... Everyone looked really nice though - especially the girls. Then, at the end of the evening, instead of having a birthday cake, Emma had birthday cupcakes. It was, honestly, the single best cake I've ever, ever eaten in my entire life. It was so perfect, so beautiful, so fluffy and sweet... Teddy and I didn't leave until gone midnight, and even then we were one of the first to leave.

We got to go to the Temple again on Tuesday. It was great. And, for the first time, I drove all the way there and back. It's far! I drove over a hundred miles that evening, on country roads a motorways. It took so much concentration and physical effort, but it was really good to get the experience.

Then, we finally get to last night. I went to a Youth Dance last night with Jake and Meagan, to see some of our friends. They were going to get the train up to my local station, and then I'd pick them up from there, but they didn't realise the train wasn't going to stop, so I had to pick them up further up the line. It was really funny; I was waiting outside the station, and Jake called me: "Ermm, we past the station... We didn't realised the train wasn't going to stop. Can you come pick us up?!" I drove to where they were, they jumped in the car, and we drove the rest of the way. We were having a party in the car, listening to Four Year Strong's new album. The dance was actually lame; there were about twenty people there, but it was really good to see our friends there. We spent more time hanging out and talking than actually 'dancing'. We really did have a laugh, and ate doughnuts, so you can't ask for much more. On the way home, we were playing A Day To Remember real loud, continuing the party. I dropped them off home, to save them getting the train, and then got in just before a quarter to one.

Today, it's been great to have a day off of work. I've chilled, enjoyed the day, went out for lunch with my family, and then spent time writing this. And, in about half an hour, I'll be heading up to London to see You Me At Six with support from We The Kings and Forever The Sickest Kids! It's gonna be good!

Anyway, what have you been up to?

Saturday, 13 March 2010

Enemy Of The World

F   O   U   R     Y   E   A   R     S   T   R   O   N   G


After hearing the first singles off of this incredible sophomore album - 'It Must Really Suck To Be Four Year Strong Right Now' and 'Wasting Time' - I was so excited to hear the rest of the tunes. And I am certainly not disappointed. It's brilliant. It's epic. I've been listening to it so much, and the songs have been stuck in my head. I'm just getting past the stage of having lines from songs stuck in your head, but not knowing which song it's from. And I'm growing to love each song for the perfect tune it is. From beginning to end, this album is energetic, exciting, and will shout and scream in your face for half an hour. It's great.

Favourite tunes: 'What The Hell Is A Gigawatt', 'One Step At A Time', and the absolutely phenomenal 'On A Saturday'. That is a tune. Listen to it. Right now. I'm pretty sure it's on their Myspace right now.

Check out their Official Website and Myspace here.

Ocean Eyes Deluxe Edition

O   W   L     C   I   T   Y


I heard this entire album last summer - on repeat, when one of my best mates bought it, loved it, and played it over and over. I kinda liked the tunes back then, but I got sick of them pretty quickly. It was cool to see earlier this year that Owl City got to #1 with 'Fireflies', and reminded actually how good this guy is. So, as we were away skiing, I bought the Deluxe Edition of the album. It's really great. It's so immense, but so chill at the same time. And it's so catchy - seriously, these songs will be stuck in your head for a very long time. I would definately recommend this; I don't have much electronic music on my Pod, but this is one I love. It sounds fantastic at top volume in the car as well.

Favourite tunes include: 'Umbrella Beach', 'Meteor Shower', 'Cave In', 'Tip Of The Iceberg', and 'Hello Seattle'. I personally haven't heard music quite like it before. [Insert more positive adjectives here.] Yeah, it's good. Plus, I like the album cover better than the original. Even that is so clean but epic...

Check out their Official Website and Myspace here.

Lungs

F   L   O   R   E   N   C   E     +     T   H   E     M   A   C   H   I   N   E


Florence and her raging Machine have been in the Top 10 album chart for weeks and weeks and weeks. When you listen to the album, you'll know why. It's phenomenal. A very new and unique sound; exhilarating and energetic, with pounding drums and epic choruses. Listen to the singles 'Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)', 'Drumming Song', 'Dog Days Are Over', and 'You Got The Love'. Then listen to the rest of the album. It's great.

Check out their Official Website and Myspace here.

Sick New Cons!

Check them outt! Complete with a Union Jack design.
It doesn't get much better...




Tuesday, 9 March 2010

FOREVER THE SICKEST GIG!

-Forever The Sickest Kids Live In London, Part 3
(Read about shows 1 and 2 here)

The concert last night was phenomenal. It was so awesome, so immmense. The last two times I've seen FTSK headline have been brilliant, and this was just as great, if not, better. It was at The Borderline in London, one of the smallest venues in London, and the smallest I've ever been to.

Fran and I got the train just after half past five, and we began our journey up to London. We were talking and laughing about random stuff - I'm sure you know how it is. I got the tickets out to show her, and it was at that point that she noticed it said 'Photographic ID required to gain entry'. Whaaattt?! See for yourself. Right there in smallprint. I had my wallet with me, so I was set, but Fran had nothing. We called the venue to explain the situation, and ask if we really did need ID to get in. Apparently we did. So, we stayed on the train once it got to London, and began the journey back to where we began... All to prove that Fran's over 16. She's almost 18, it's so stupid... So anyway, we picked up her purse, got some food, then got back on the train and to London. After a short trip on the Underground, we got to Tottenham Court Road. I really had no idea where the venue was, and Fran thought I'd have a plan other than asking people for directions... We went into the legendary Dominion Theatre to ask, and were pointed in the right direction. We were walking for quite a while looking for it, and I brought up the address on my phone, and asked a bouncer to some club where it was, and he helped us find it. It was tucked down a tiny alley, and we'd walked almost all the way around it once we'd found it... We got our tickets scanned and got in - without having to show any ID.

We got to the venue at about quarter past 8, and the support band, Me Vs Hero were mid set. We dropped our stuff in the cloakroom, got a couple of waters, and went to watch the band. The venue really is tiny, with a capacity of 275, but it's really nice inside. Very intimate, but a great layout. Plus, there's no barrier. Finally the support finished, and the crew began setting up for FTSK. Fran and I weaved forward, and were just a couple of people away from the stage. I really wanted some pictures of the gig, but left my phone in my bag in the cloakroom, not trusting anyone at concerts after having my phone stolen at Madina Lake. I went back to the cloakroom, got my phone out, got a couple of pics (like the one above), and then put it straight back in... Just a couple of minutes later, everything was set up, the awesome shiny microphone stand was out, and the lights went down...

Forever The Sickest Kids came on stage to 'Dance Of The Knights' from Romeo And Juliet, Op 64, Act 1. I just know it was the theme music to The Apprentice. Check out the music on Youtube here. The crowd was cheering as they begun their set with 'Tough Love'. I suddenly had a load of energy, and went crazy, singing and jumping... They are so good live. After just this first song, Kyle had smashed a hole in one of his drums! Hahaha... So they replaced it, and then played 'Hey Brittany'. I saw that on the first beat of the drum on this song, Kyle's drumstick snapped in half... It was funny. And that's their setlist. It's pretty good, eh?!

They played a really great set. All the time, the crowd was bouncing and jumping to the tunes, and Jonathan was leaning over the crowd, high-fiving the fans. I received many a high five. It was such a great gig. At the beginning, I jumped into the small, but pretty intense mosh pit. It was so much fun, just getting pushed around. There was one part of the concert, after they'd finished 'What Do You Want From Me?', they asked what song they want us to play next. I shouted "I don't know about you! I don't know about you!" Then they said, "This next song is called 'I Don't Know About You But I Came To Dance'". It was crazy! They must have planned it, but I love that that's what I wanted! Haha! During the rest of the show; Kent did his impression of Simon Cowell; Fran shouted "Austin!", and he turned and waved at her; and at the end of one song, I learnt forward and pushed my fist towards the stage, and shouted to Jonathan to "pound it!". He did.

As you can see from the setlist, they 'finished' on 'She's A Lady'. That is an absolutely epic song. I was going so crazy for it - everyone was. As soon as the song had finished, I weaved my way back to the cloakroom and got my phone out of my bag again... That's when I got all the pictures of the band on stage playing. They encored with 'Woah Oh!', but could have gone on for another hour... Near the end of 'Woah Oh!', everyone surged forward, and there was an immense stage invasion. I climbed onstage, alongside probably almost a hundred other people... It was great though. We had to pass Caleb to walk off stage, and as he was playing, I held out my hand for a five as I passed, and he stopped playing to five me. That is cool. They're such a cool band. It was a great way to end a show. Here's some more photos I got...







It was a brilliant concert. The venue was tiny, but really nice, and the crowd were enjoying the party. What more can you ask for?
Can't wait to see them again next week!