A night of heavy music, free guitar picks and wild dancing from New Years Day
On February 19th, metal legends New Years Day took to Southampton’s 1865 to continue their first ever UK and EU headline tour of their latest album, 2019’s Unbreakable. Joined by Call Me Amour and Lowlives, it was a night of heavy rock, headbanging and wild dance parties.
Kicking off the night was US metal band Call Me Amour, who weren’t going to let the crowd away with just standing still and listening to the music. Lead singer Harry Radford was at times, quite literally, climbing the walls, bouncing into the crowd to start a mosh pit of about a dozen people. This intense enthusiasm made Call Me Amour one of the most high-energy and engaging support acts that I’ve seen in a while. Lowlives didn’t have quite the same energy, but certainly had a massive effect on the crowd, who were going wild throughout their set.
Soon enough, it was time for New Years Day to take the stage. It seemed like the support acts might have tired out the audience a little, as it took some time to build up the energy – but when they opened their set with the heavy ‘Come For Me’ it was impossible to stand still. What stood out the most about New Years Day is how passionate they are about what they do, whether they’re playing an arena or a more intimate venue like the 1865 – they came on stage ready to smash it, and they gave the fans 100% of their energy to do so.
The only setback was perhaps how their set translates between large and small venue. Some of the lighting effects and smoke machines came on too strong and made it difficult to actually see the performers for parts of their set, which took away from some of the intimacy that you get in a venue like that.
In their defence, they were quick to change that as the show went on, culminating in a wild dance party in which the band’s guitarists joined the headbanging crowd off the stage, while vocalist Ash Costello got up close and personal with delighted fans. In the final song, ‘Angel Eyes, she called for everyone to swap places in the audience, so that everyone standing at the back could get a chance to be at the barrier. It’s not something I’ve ever seen at a gig before, but on reflection, it’s genius.
Although the gig faced some more technical setbacks in the smaller venue, and the audience took a little bit of time to warm up, by the end it was clear that New Years Day had won over the audience with their powerful live performance – not to mention the number of free guitar picks thrown out into the audience that night!
Keep an eye out for any of New Years Day’s live shows here.