Old Fire Station, Bournemouth

The Blackout

It wasn’t long ago when The Blackout found themselves opening for pop punk pioneers, Blink 182 at the BIC in July, and since their experience playing venues of that size they have returned to their more intimate surroundings to promote upcoming album “Start The Party” which is released on 21st January. This band are all about having fun on stage as their high energy shows have built them a worthy reputation as one of the best live bands in the UK.

Opening the affair is Motherwell based indie rap pop outfit, The LaFontaines, and although I missed the start of their set, it was obvious from the moment I wandered in that this band has something unique on offer. Who would have thought that a guy with a thick Scottish accent rapping over vibrant indie instrumentals could create such a quirky sound. Their front man Kerr Okan comfortably interacts with a crowd of new faces who warmly respond to their gibes about being poor and requiring merch sales to feed themselves for the night.

After an impressive opening set, Welsh pop rock up risers, Straight Lines confidently burst into their uplifting anthems. Front man Thomas Jenkins’ vocal display is as potent as the last time I saw these guys, but sadly their vibrant outlook can’t override the feeling that I’ve heard it all before. Apart from the admirable ‘Freaks Like Us’ things never really reach boiling point during their set and this only leads to a fairly subdued build up to headliner’s slot.


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Despite the slightly timid atmosphere in what seems like a feeble classification of a sell out crowd, The Blackout walk out to the expectant screams of their loyal fan base. Gavin Butler and Sean Smith (sporting his interesting pink/red hair) bounce out and orchestrate the crowd to ‘go fucking mental’ as new single ‘Start The Party’ instantly steps this band up to a level above the rest. Their fusion between surging melodies and chunky scream led riffs allow this band to create a user friendly version of a sound which usually requires a more acquired taste to enjoy. Gavin Butler’s soaring vocals stand out as a killer factor to this band, but when combined with Sean Smith; their dual vocal attack coincides so naturally. As expected, the banter between songs is bordering on offensive as Sean and Gavin treat a ‘sheep shagger’ heckler to the response of ‘we fuck ëem, you eat ëem’ and ‘how does it feel to have my…í moving on. There’s no doubt that this band effervesce energy like its being given away for free, and their enthusiasm never halts for a split second during their performance.


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Quite honestly I wasn’t blown away quite as much on the second time seeing them, but it’s clear that this band is made for intimate shows. The key difference between their performance tonight and at the BIC is that the crowd tonight are here to see them; and that was proved by the chaotic display from the fans tonight. Their exciting performances stem from excessive energy levels, emphatic vocal patterns, rich guitar tones, enormous sub drops and a set list loaded with sing-along anthems. The Blackout came here to start the party and I think we can all agree that they certainly did.


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Set List
The Blackout

Start The Party
Prepare For A Wound
Ambition Is Critical
Top Of The World
Said & Done
The Storm
Children Of The Night
We Live On
We’re Going To Hell….So Bring The Sunblock
Never By Your Side
This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things
Hope(Scream Out Loud)
It’s High Tide Baby!
I’m A Riot? You’re A Fucking Riot
Save Ourselves(The Warning)
Higher & Higher

Band Links

Review by George Fullerton.
Pictures by Charlie Raven

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