Review: Blossoms, O2 Guildhall, Southampton

By Richard Derbyshire

BLOSSOMS headlined the last big indie gig at Southampton Guildhall this year.

And frontman Tom Ogden, drummer Joe Donovan, lead guitarist Josh Dewhurst, bassist Charlie Salt and keyboard player Myles Kellock showed why they are the kings of indie synth pop.

Their appearance here was after they played to 7,000 fans across two nights at Manchester’s Victoria Warehouse, a venue so large, only the biggest acts perform there once on tour, let alone twice in one weekend.

However, while tonight’s set came after this tour’s homecoming gig, it was no comedown for the band or the capacity crowd, who had waited three years to see Blossoms again in Southampton.

Last time, in 2015, they played on a Saturday afternoon at The Engine Rooms to less than 200 people.

Now, tonight, and two top five albums later, songwriter Tom Ogden was master and commander of nearly 2,000 fans and this, their 77th gig of 2018, was one of their more modest affairs.

But some things don’t change and songs At Most A Kiss, Blow, Getaway and Blown Rose, all from the biggest selling debut record of 2016, enthralled a city that had missed out on the band’s first album tour.

New singles I Can’t Stand It and How Long Will This Last from second album Cool Like You effortlessly wrapped themselves into the set, while Tom’s acoustic interlude took on Wham’s Last Christmas and an Oasis medley of Half The World Away and Don’t Look Back in Anger.

A formidable encore included single There’s a Reason Why (I Never Return Your Calls) and a cover of The Smiths’ Bigmouth Strikes Again, which saw the lead singer race around the stage and jump up on Joe’s drums during the instrumental.

Charlemagne, their infectious guitar hook-ridden, perfect indie pop song, wrapped things up and was, inevitably, the biggest singalong of the night, coupled with a bouncing mosh pit.

Fellow Stockport band Fuzzy Sun drew a big early crowd. Expect to hear more from them soon. They join up with Blossoms again in June when they support their touring pals’ headline show at Stockport County football ground.

Meanwhile, fans who enjoyed London band When Young were also able to listen to the trio’s pre-recorded session on John Kennedy’s show on Radio X straight after the Guildhall show.

Blossoms’ first two albums were produced by The Coral’s James Skelly and Rich Turvey. James Skelly is currently in the studio with The Sherlocks producing the follow up to their first album Live For The Moment, which was the biggest selling debut of 2017. He could be about to work his magic again.


I Can’t Stand It


Honey Sweet

Cool Like You

I Just Imagined You

Deep Grass


How Long Will This Last


Love Talk

Cut Me and I’ll Bleed

Blown Rose

Stranger Still

Between The Eyes

My Favourite Room

At Most A Kiss

Bigmouth Strikes Again

There’s a Reason Why (I Never Return Your Calls)