One only has to utter a single name and everyone is aflutter: Adele. The last few years have been wonderful for Miss Adkins, having received critical acclaim from every outlet possible the minute debut album, 19, was released in 2008. It is not that often you get to witness true talent on a firsthand basis, so thank heavens she visited Birmingham for four exceptional nights on her live tour this week. Attending the second night of these dates, it was pandemonium from the outset, with people queueing for an age just to get to their seats.
On his latest tour, James Morrison descended on a slightly more unusual venue: Birmingham’s gorgeous Symphony Hall. Considering how on previous occasions, the singer-songwriter has sold out academies and arenas across the country, it was a surprise decision, but one that worked surprisingly well.
Taking place upon the glorious Kobetamendi Hill, Bilbao BBK is back for another year of stellar acts and killer views. Organised by Basque music promoters Last Tour back in 2006, it has previously been nominated for Best Foreign Festival in 2010 and 2011, and that is no surprise looking at this year’s line up.
It seems these days that it is the ‘in thing’ to hate The 1975. Before NME were splashing their photos on their front cover, they named them the Worst Band of 2014, with indie Twitter seemingly awash with berating of the band and their material. Be that due to their outspoken frontman Matt Healy, their ever-so-slightly irritating // M A R K E T I N G C A M P A I G N S // or simply that you don’t like their music, there is one thing you have to give them credit for: they are an extremely talented live band. Having formed over 14 years ago in Manchester, it is clear from witnessing them play ‘the biggest show of [our] lives’ at Birmingham’s Barclaycard Arena that they have truly honed their craft.
Back in February 2014, Yannis Philippakis attempted his usual jump from the balcony at Birmingham’s O2 Academy during Foals‘ headline tour, only to be restrained by security. Flash forward two years later, and he finally achieved his stage-jumping dream in Birmingham, only this time in a much large setting: the Barclaycard Arena.
Rounding off his tenth year as a solo artist with a sold-out UK tour, Frank Turner shows no signs of slowing down. Playing to a packed out crowd at Birmingham’s O2 Academy, the excitement buzzing around the room was impossible to ignore (as were the masses of previous tour tees).
Currently in the running for most humble band of the year award is most definitely JAWS. The Brummie band took over The Rainbow on Sunday night, giving 200 lucky fans a free ticket to see them in action, frontman Connor Schofield thanking the crowd profusely throughout the show for turning up. Speaking to the band after the show, they explained they wanted to do something for their fans and “pay them back” before festival season begins, and they did not disappoint. The small venue, where they played their first ever show as a band, seemed like a second home to them and it was packed to the rafters.
It is only fitting that local band Superfood played a homecoming show at Birmingham’s Rainbow Warehouse. The place is a small but homely and beloved venue to many underground and unsigned bands, B-Town pals Peace and Swim Deep having previously played there. The four-piece were playing their first of only two headline shows (the other being at London’s Heaven), with the likes of fellow Brummie band JAWS in and amongst the crowd.