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Live: YOU ME AT SIX // O2 Academy Brixton, London

“We want to show you that anything is possible”, You Me At Six throw a massive party in celebration of the 10th anniversary of their debut album Take Off Your Colours.

For anyone who’s been around on music scene for longer than 10 years, it comes as no surprise that finding a balance between the ‘old’ and ‘new’ is always a challenge. Taking over O2 Academy Brixton for a three-night residency, You Me At Six proved to be one of those bands who still know how to set our hearts racing as they pour everything they’ve got into their live performances. 

With a string of successful headline shows and festival line-up slots under their belt, the band released their sixth album, suitably titled VI, earlier in Autumn, which composes of some of their strongest work to date. However, as we gathered at the sold-out O2 Brixton last Sunday night, the reasons to celebrate were plenty. 

Heading out on the 10th anniversary tour of their debut album Take Off Your Colours, YMAS breathed a new life into the songs that have been soundtracking our lives for the past decade.

Due to the smell of smoke on the balcony (the panic got quickly under control though), an on-stage marriage proposal and fight in the crowd, it was quite an eventful night. And the fact that the band were playing the album in full and we all knew what song was coming next, made it this much more exciting.

With a dazzling stage production and swirling lights accompanying us throughout the set, we were taken on a nostalgic journey to where it all began. Bringing forth the bold attitude and raw essence of their early work, The Truth Is A Terrible Thing hit us straight with effervescent guitars and fast-paced dynamics which continued in Call That A Comeback.

An absolute banger, Save It For The Bedroom ricocheted off the walls echoing with a massive singalong, whilst kaleidoscopic lights beautifully reflected the album’s artwork during Take Off Your Colours.

Taking a moment to express the grandeur of the evening, frontman Josh Franceschi said: “We made this record a very long time ago. I was 16. The only thing we wanted to achieve was not to go to uni. We never thought where we would be but we’re standing in the O2 Academy Brixton! You gave us chance to make music that’s 10 years old. We want to show you that this is not about us. This tour is for you. And we want to show you that anything is possible. You guys are where we’re from.”

Continuing with high energy and enthusiasm, the stand out moments of the whole set came from the towering If You Run and ballad-esque Always Attract, with Josh’s sister Elissa joining the band on vocal duties for the latter. The emotional mood was quickly set as the crowd sang back every word.

With The Rumour rounding off the main set and Josh telling some guys off to “not fight each other”, we were treated to some of their new songs. One of the best tracks YMAS have ever written, Fast Forward built up into a thrilling blend of passion and frenzy, whilst I O U showcased the band’s more experimental side, with Straight To My Head serving us a huge dose of catchy melodic vibes.

Dropping fan favourites Finders Keepers and Kiss And Tell into the mix, Underdog brought the grand finale to their set. With years of experience and doing things their own way, You Me At Six still pack a solid punch at their live shows, and if last weekend proved anything is that they surely managed to elevate their status to the next level strongly cementing their music legacy.

Photos: Kasia Osowiecka