After a heavy month of touring, Mallory Knox finally found themselves at Southampton playing local venue the Mo’club. Judging by the performance they gave, the rest of the tour must have been a momentous one for the Cambridge boys as well as supporters Blitz Kids and Crooks. Spirits were high, as the crowd were noticeably excited to see one of the UK’s most up and coming bands of the year.
Blitz Kids energetically bounded onto the stage, much to the delight of the crowd. Although slightly less recognised than Mallory Knox, Blitz Kids used this to their advantage and put on one of the best support acts, personally, I have ever seen. With Joe James’ cheeky lines, ‘do you like my flashing stick guys?’, and catchy songs, the crowd participation was surprisingly high and from song to song the band kept me entertained. Before leaving the now fanatic crowd, Blitz Kids played their single ‘On My Own’ and along with James’ vocals and mini guitar riffs from their lead guitarist, I can safely say they put on a performance to be proud of.
After a short pause, it was finally time for Mallory Knox. They kicked off their set with the conveniently titled track ‘Hello‘ from their debut album Signals. I guess it helps with the set list when you have a song with the title of a greeting.
Lead vocalist Mickey Chapman barely needed to sing as the crowd knew every word. This was a demonstration of their stratospheric rise in popularity this year. After playing singles ‘Wake Up’ and ‘Wolves’(apparently Dave Rawling’s favourite track) it wasn’t until their spectacular single ‘Beggars’ came that it finally hit me that I was listening to one of the UK’s most upcoming bands. By reaching BBC Radio One’s top 100 tracks, obviously I am not alone thinking this.
The balance of new and old was delivered perfectly as they played tracks such as their debut single, ‘Oceans‘ which created yet another joyful mosh pit. Halfway through the act, Mallory Knox slowed down the pace and played their most intimate song ‘1949’, with Mikey eagerly making the crowd admit their love for each other before kicking in with beautiful lyrics and light musical tones. As a personal highlight, this was a perfect example that bands with a heavier edge also have a softer side to them. To old and new fans alike, this was a moment to remember and Mallory Knox certainly delivered a performance of real emotion.
I think the most pleasant factor of this performance, was that you could tell how much this meant to the band. The genuine surprise to be able to pull in a crowd of 600+ was radiated on each and every one of the band’s faces and it made me realise just how much it must mean for a band of friends to become as recognised as they are now. Even better was the modesty of the band with Mikey urging the crowd to raise the crowds lighters to the sky with ‘come on guys, I know it’s not Wembley but put your fucking lighters up in the air’.
If this performance was anything to go by, I would bet a fair few pints that this first headlining tour had to be career changing for the band and can easily say they should be proud of themselves. The band have come a long way since releasing Pilots and they clearly have matured along the way, appreciating what they have become. Overall, headliners and supports a like, the gig had a great atmosphere which couldn’t be faulted, at least not by me. It’s clear that this band, and even the supports, are on their way up and there appears to be no slowing down.