Young Guns ended their UK tour on a high with their first headline show in Sheffield for three years on Wednesday 10th June 2015 alongside top notch support including Nothing But Thieves.
It’s an exciting time for Young Guns. Their first full UK tour for two and a half years has seen sellout shows across the UK, whilst their new album ‘Ones and Zeroes’ – released at the start of the week – is expected to earn the alternative rockers their highest chart position to date.
Acoustic Set/Signing at HMV
For Gustav Wood, Fraser and John Taylor, Simon Mitchell and Ben Jolliffe, their time in Sheffield was to be a short but busy one. The quintet kicked off their day with an acoustic set at HMV in the city centre, performing four tracks – including ‘I Want Out’ and ‘Bones’ for an intimate audience of less than 100 people before signing copies of the new album for delighted fans.
A few hours later and fans were flocking to the city’s Plug venue for the near-sellout show. Locals ‘Our Saving Day’ got proceedings underway before tour regulars ‘Dead!’ set the room alight with energy.
The strain of touring occasionally showed in the vocals of frontman Alex Mountford, who struggled notably on some of the quieter sections of a set that included tracks ‘We Are Dead’ and ‘Alaska’. However, this was more than made up for with the powerful sound and an energy-driven performance from a band that left a big impression on a crowd largely unaware of the punk rock quintet before this evening.
Nothing But Thieves
The main support act offered an additional treat for those who had bought tickets for Young Guns, courtesy of the highly-rated young band Nothing But Thieves.
Conor Mason’s unique and talented voice instantly filled the packed room as they kicked off with ‘Itch’. The group from Southend-on-Sea followed this up with a few unreleased tracks, including the catchy ‘Hostage’ and ‘Excuse Me’ – for which Mason brought out the acoustic.
Seven straight months of touring for ‘NBT’ then came to an end in the style with four of their best known tracks – ‘If I Get High’, the chilling ‘Graveyard Whistling’, ‘Wake Up Call’ and finally ‘Ban All The Music’.
It was another great performance from this fast-growing band that Young Guns front man Gustav Wood would later describe as “The best band in the UK right now…(except us!)”.
With the supports all done, it was now almost time for the main event and you could feel the excitement growing inside the venue. And the band allowed this atmosphere to build to near-boiling point, hitting the stage 25 minutes later than billed, but any frustrations were quickly forgotten as they unleashed an unforgettable career-spanning performance of over an hour on the steel city crowd.
‘I Want Out’ from the new album proved to be the perfect opening, whilst ‘Rising Up’ and Stitches’ were other memorable newer tracks in the early part of the set. The band also performed some of their earlier material, including the likes of ‘Crystal Clear’ and the tamer ‘After The War’ from their debut 2010 release ‘All Our Kings Are Dead’, which were big hits with the adoring audience.
The frontman of the band Gustav Wood created an excellent rapport with the Sheffield crowd, keeping them involved throughout the night with on-stage chats, stories and requests for sing-a-longs and crowd-surfers. Added to his excellent vocals and stage presence, he proved to be brilliant performer and personality in equal measure.
A sing-a-long to the simple but catchy ‘Daylight’ offered another highlight of the evening and new song ‘Speaking In Tongues’ did not sound out of place alongside the likes of older classics like ‘Weight of the World’ in a superb setlist.
There was only one way to end for the Young Guns – of course, with their most successful and well-known track to date ‘Bones’. Gustav invited the members of the tour’s main support act Nothing But Thieves back on to the stage for this one, informing them to go crowd-surfing themselves! And the Young Guns frontman joined them, singing the majority of the final track from the shoulders of a member of the crowd – a truly memorable finish to an unforgettable night and tour for the band.
The UK tour may be over but there is no time for a break for the band, who head to the Kerrang Awards tomorrow ahead of a “not-so-secret set” at Download Festival this weekend.
But Gustav promised the Sheffield crowd that it wouldn’t be such a long wait for the band’s return to the city, their last visit being from Tramlines in 2012, and based on tonight’s performance there is no doubt that it will be another unmissable show when they do return to the steel city!
Words by Ryan Watterson