London Grammar, O2 Apollo, Manchester

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Haunting vocals and flawless performances; London Grammar stunned the Apollo for the second night.

Friday saw the second of a two-night stint at Manchester’s O2 Apollo, for the ethereal London-based trio, London Grammar.

Formed at Nottingham University in 2012, London Grammar – Hannah Reid, Dan Rothman and Dominic Major – have quickly cemented themselves as one of the UK’s most beloved bands. Their debut album ‘If You Wait’, released in 2013, saw the trio gain a fiercely loyal fan base; one which came out in full force for Friday’s show, supporting their release of their new album, ‘Truth is a Beautiful Thing’.

The night was kicked off by the Californian trio, Lo Moon. Their set, including such tracks as Thorns and the beautiful This Is It, provided the perfect support for what was to come. Looking extremely comfortable on the Apollo’s stage, Lo Moon quickly became an audience favourite, leaving the stage to warm applause and what will certainly be an extended fan base.

After a slightly delayed entrance, London Grammar stepped onto the stage, kicking off their set with the mellow Who Am I. The soft tone quickly disintegrated with a performance of Flickers/Help Me Lose My Mind. This was followed by an audience favourite, Wasting My Young Years from their debut album ‘If You Wait’.

There is no denying that Hannah Reid’s vocals were flawless. Her haunting tones filled the venue, stunning everyone into silence. A pre-planned audience proposal was followed by ‘Truth is a Beautiful Thing’ track Rooting For You, the first verse of which was performed a cappella: something I am so thankful to have witnessed first-hand.

The stage design complemented the ebb and flow of London Grammar’s tracks, with the large LED panels displaying track soundwaves, and beautiful scenery which fit well with the eerie nature of tracks such as Hey Now and Sights.

The main part of the set was closed with Big Picture and Strong, the latter of which was belted by audience members. After a short departure from the stage, the trio returned to close their show with Bones of Ribbon, Oh Woman Oh Man and a stunning performance of Metal & Dust.

For me, London Grammar are a band who’ve ensured they’ll be included as a ‘classic’, paving the way for a focus on raw vocals and atmospheric riffs. The real test for this comes in the form of live performance, and there is no denying that this is where London Grammar excel – a band that you have to see live to fully appreciate their beauty.

Based in Central Manchester, but frequently found in other parts of the country in the name of live music. Otherwise, I am a departmental manager for a software company.

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