Wooden Shjips Wooden Shjips open their set with fragments of sound and a TV static type lighting effect. The lights pulsate as the beat creeps in, and I find myself being hypnotised by ‘Eclipse’. This is the opening song of their 2018 album ‘V.’, and a gorgeous representation of their ‘garage-styled psychedelia’. The firm bass and drum instrumentals, layered with murmuring vocals from Erik ‘Ripley’ Johnson, are entrancing.


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NOFX A license to hate, Dad jokes and kick ass women. It was a line-up devised as much for the bands’ enjoyment as it was crowd pleasing.


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Of Mice & Men “Welcome to this evening’s medley of metalcore! Ready to mosh? Marvellous.” On Wednesday night the metalheads of Birmingham turned out in force. They welcomed Of Mice & Men with arms wide, whiskey in hand – an army of long-haired lusciousness. Damn, it felt good to be back among my people! The metal community tends to make amazing crowds, and this night was certainly no exception. Both the main band and the support acts were embraced with the fiercest love. If this gig was anything to go by, the final stint of OM&M’s Defy Tour is going to be legendary.


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Tokio Myers Tokio Myers, the producer come pianist that mesmerised the nation and is renown for winning entertainment competition Britain’s Got Talent in 2017. Having amassed a meteoric fan base, bodies flooded every vein in the O2 Institute’s confined structure. Like a clot, the cellular like audience stuck together to get a glimpse of the artist who was encaged around an architecture of instruments.


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The Wombats A relentlessly energetic crowd jumped, danced and screamed their way into the weekend as The Wombats brought their sold out UK tour to Birmingham’s O2 Institute on 23rd March!


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Anne-Marie An architecture of attitude, ambience and energy, pop diva Anne-Marie welcomed a congested crowd to the first night of her tour at Birmingham’s O2 Institute.


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Tom Grennan It was an expectant crowd last night at the O2 Institute waiting for one of the current darlings of the airwaves, Bedford's Tom Grennan. Almost as cold inside as it was out, there was an eclectic mix of punters from many backgrounds, but all shared that palpable sense of excitement for the singer's performance.


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At The Drive In If Death From Above punch you in the gut then At The Drive In obliterate all of your senses without a hint of mercy. Intentions are laid out from the outset with the post-hardcore band returning to their critically acclaimed album, Relationship of Command, for the opening track, Arcarsenal.


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The Front Bottoms The Front Bottoms take the stage in a misty orange glow surrounded by wafts of incense. Opening with ‘You used to say (Holy Fuck)’ – the opener from last year’s ‘Going Grey’, this slow build see the crowd swearing at the top of their lungs. As ‘Going Grey’ is the current album they’re touring its extended cover acts as the backdrop; presenting the crowd with a giant penis just behind front man Brian Sella’s shoulder.


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Hell Is For Heroes It's hard to believe that 15 years have passed since Hell Is For Heroes released their first studio album, The Neon Handshake. It was one of the defining albums of the early-2000s rock scene, gathering rave reviews and scoring Rock Sound's Album of the Year award.


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Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes As is customary on ‘these types’ of evenings the ‘Facial Hair per attendee’ ratio was a good 30% higher than a normal gig. Yes ladies and gentlemen a certain Mr Frank Carter was in town with his Rattlesnakes to deliver their own unique brand of English hardcore punk. It was gonna be wild, gonna be raucous and gonna be a whole lot of fun.


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Howard Jones It’s been well over thirty years since Howard Jones asked us to “throw off our mental chains”; to challenge our preconceived ideas. How time flies by. In support of his brand new ‘Best Of’ Howard Jones release entitled ‘BEST (1983-2017)’, and now with all new and extended Electric Band, he's put doing a series of five shows across the UK, including tonight's at Birmingham's o2 Institute.


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Opeth Tonight we venture into the world of progressive metal; specifically of the Nordic variety. The 02 Institute in Birmingham presents us with Enslaved from Norway, a band that has been on the radar since the nineties and has a large back catalogue to choose from. The headliner tonight, Opeth, have garnered much success in their 18 years since formation, with frequent changes in style along the way.


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The Pigeon Detectives On Friday, I postponed binge-watching Stranger Things 2 to go and review The Pigeon Detectives at Birmingham’s O2 Institute, supported by Little Comets and The Clause. But was it worth it? The initial melodrama involving a member of security staff asking me my age, and then reacting with embarrassment when I told her, was not a good start (I am more than double the 14+ age requirement for this gig). However, things seemed a bit more reasonable once I got inside.


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