On this Wednesday night in Manchester, Circa Waves were set to delight the crowd of a sold out Manchester Academy.
Opening the show was The Academic, who warmed up the crowd and made sure everyone was in high spirits. A few songs into their set, lead guitarist Matt spoke up and said jokingly “It’s our lead singer’s birthday today! He finally turned fourteen!” The crowd roared with laughter and it lightened the mood even more for what was to come of the evening. The band’s sound is an upbeat indie-rock style with memorable choruses.
A highlight of their set was ‘Sometimes’ from their new EP Northern Boy, which prompted the audience to cheer during every drum and guitar interval. This band blasts out the type of lyrics you can sing along to and not get out of your head. A sea of hands rose as high as they could into the air when the band rocked out to their debut single ‘Different’, and the house lights flashed up at the end of the set so the band could see what an amazing crowd they’d played to.
Sundara Karma were the next band to emerge from the dark and smokey stage, announcing “This is our new single, if you’ve heard it before then sing along, if you haven’t then make up the words” The band then proceeded to perform ‘Vivienne’, a feel-good indie love song that every angsty teen in the crowd swayed along to.
Echoey lead vocals from Oscar spread across the crowd alongside the instrumentals, and at this point of the night, something took over the crowd and they became ridiculously rowdy in anticipation for Circa Waves, throwing cups of beer in all directions. Oscar asked “Who’s in the mood to dance? ‘Cause this one starts off slow but builds up to an absolute banger.” The repetitive kick drum must have sent subconscious signals to the crowd causing them clap along with it, creating a wonderful atmosphere. By this point, the whole band had lost themselves in the music, and were throwing themselves around the stage.
To demonstrate their excitement in the interlude between Sundara Karma and Circa Waves, a group of about 15 lads start a mosh pit. I’m pretty sure one of them had a butternut squash confiscated from them. Who brings vegetables to a gig?
An interlude of music rumbled through the speakers to welcome Circa Waves to the stage, causing an almighty roar as they jumped right into their set sounding refreshing and leaving you feeling convivial. Front man Kieran Shudall looked out across the crowd with a cheeky smile before thanking everyone that showed up.
Screeching guitar solos and perfectly timed drums add to the intensity of the evening, not to mention the bass that rumbles through your stomach like you’ve just gone over the top of a roller coaster, these boys have a hint of The Kooks in their sound and it works well with their on stage and energetic style of movement.
Towards the end of the show, it was getting late and the guys saved the best song for last, closing with the anthemic ‘T-Shirt Weather’ after teasing the crowd and being persuaded to come back on stage for an encore, rounding off an epic evening that was enjoyed by everyone.