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  • Writer's pictureOrla Joyce

You Me at Six at Alexandra Palace - Truth Decay tour.

You Me at Six at Alexandra Palace - Truth Decay tour.

From delayed album launches and fandom drama, it was quite the journey for You me at Six to get to Alexandra Palace. However, on February 11th the Londoners took to the infamous stage to conclude their Truth Decay UK tour.

Alexandra Palace is one of London's most iconic venues, with a capacity of 10,400 it was a challenge You me at Six didn’t shy away from. Alexandra Palace, commonly referred to as ‘Ally Pally’ has played host to countless music gods, over the years from Smashing Pumpkins to the late George Michael. On this night four acts would be performing, opening the show were Bears in Trees, The Maine and finally Waterparks. Each of these supports has dedicated core fan bases so along with the die-hard ‘Sixers’ there was guaranteed to be a spectacular atmosphere. Unfortunately, there were some concerns over one fandom's behaviour on previous nights of the tour and there was hopes it wouldn’t happen at the grand finale show.

First off the bat was Bears in Trees, a young up and coming band from Croyden. All of a sudden the teddy bears in the crowd brought by multiple concertgoers made sense. The band certainly knew how to get the crowd energised and described themselves as somewhere between Slipknot and SpongeBob. Although their fresh faces and pop rock sound would have them more SpongeBob of centre the analogy was certainly accurate. If your preferred sound is pop punk/rock this band is definitely one to watch. Their energy was contagious as they cracked jokes and bounced around the stage. True to the pop-punk genre there were references to the everyday struggles of anxiety, depression, and being misunderstood. Don’t be misled by their bright colours and Ukulele (yes that’s back apparently) their tracks have some “emo” themes. As their discography and fandom grow we’ll be sure to see a lot more of them on the festival circuit, charts and tours of their own.

Next on the bill was a band called the Maine from Phoenix, Arizona. This is a band that is an old friend of the UK music festivals, and are returning in May for Slamdunk. They are real professionals in their craft. Their set did their back catalogue justice not favouring one album over the other and demonstrated their range. Making sure to include their ‘modern emo’ hits “Numb Without You” and “Black Butterflies and Deja vu”. They also included tracks from their latest album XOXO: From Love & Anxiety in Real Time, and if you’re a fan of The 1975 that album is worth a listen. The band made sure people didn’t stop moving from start to finish and even pulled a fan on stage to help close the set. The Maine made a clear impact on the crowd as multiple people started looking them up on social media and following their accounts. Though there wasn’t massive stage production for any of the support acts it was evident it wasn’t required to elevate the performances and win people over.

The third and final support act was Waterparks. In terms of followers Waterparks’ fandom can sometimes rub people the wrong way. There were rumours of “parxies” allegedly purchasing VIP packages for YMAS in order to get to the barrier for Waterparks’ set and leaving the venue when it finished. By all means, if the band you’re most excited to see is on before the main act, it can be nice to allow fans of the next band to move forward. But leaving the venue entirely could be seen as disrespectful to the headline act, you paid for the ticket, you may as well stay. Having said that in the case of Alexandra Palace, there didn’t seem to be much more than a shuffle after Waterparks set. There is no denying that the Texas threesome knows how to command a stage, they also seemed at home playing in a larger venue. Their more recent music can be considered a bit chaotic but in an objectively good way. Their set on this night struck the right balance of their older pop punk songs like “Blonde”, and they even fit in soft acoustic versions of “Lucky People” and “I Miss Having Sex but at Least I Don’t Wanna Die Anymore”. They then rounded off the set with two bangers that are fun, loud and cathartic “Turbulent” and recently released single “Real Super Dark”. Love them or hate them they generate a response in the crowd which is exactly the job of a support act, to get a crowd hyped. At one point they managed to get 52 people on sitting shoulders so the crowd was certainly responsive to them. There was only half an hour between Waterpark's set ending and You me at Six’s starting, so they were definitely a good shout as a final support act.

One thing that was to be commended on the night was efficiency. From VIP experiences kicking off on time, General Admission doors opening as scheduled, and the queuing system in effect before the show and for merchandise ran seamlessly. Right down to preparing the stage in between bands, everything ran like a well-oiled machine. Security and stewards must also be commended for their attentiveness, water was constantly on hand, and they were on the ball when getting people's attention if required. The medical team were called upon a few times during the night and due to the efficiency of all involved most people seemed to have a safe experience inside the venue.

After 18 years of being a band, You me at Six headlining Alexandra Palace was one of their biggest London headliners. Lead singer Josh Franceschi admitted a member of their team said they’d only sell three thousand tickets for the ten thousand capacity venue. Although it wasn’t a sell out gig it did seem to be close enough to a sell out, proving that naysayer wrong. It was a special night for all in attendance, the crowd were given a surprise guest appearance from Enter Shikari’s Rou Reynolds who joined the band for “No Future”. Frontman Franceschi thanked the fans who have followed them for years and watched them grow from boys into men. Although they’re a band that seems to have been around forever (formed in 2004) they are still very young, some members just barely 30!

The stage set up was something to behold with platforms and larger than life light displays synchronised with every song. However, Bassist Matt Barnes did feel tucked away on one of the platforms for most of the show. There was also a catwalk which certainly got a lot of use. A particularly tender moment took place at the end of the catwalk as Josh and guitarist Chris played an acoustic rendition of “No one Does it Better”. Josh made a speech of gratitude to the fans and to music bringing people together, and teary eyed he embraced his bandmate before returning to the stage. All in all the night seemed to have been a success from a patrons standpoint. You me at Six’s set had a good mix of old and new songs, which I’m sure appeased both the old and new fans. Despite there being a delay in the release of their album Truth Decay resulting in it only coming out on Feb 10th there was a very positive response to songs fans may not yet have heard. The set was long enough, lasting just shy of 2 hours and after the high energy and engagement from the 3 support acts I’d say most people were exhausted yet satisfied with their night. Leaving the venue was also something that could have been a messy situation but due to the organisation of the event, stewards were at hand to point people in the right direction. Extra buses were put on to accommodate the large crowd and car park attendees had good control over the flow of traffic.

Overall I would consider the night a massive success and there seems to be an exciting future ahead for all the bands that took to the stage on the night.


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