Reviewed: Years & Years And Tove Styrke

At Nottingham's Rock City October 11th 2015


It was a later than usual start tonight (20.30pm!) but that wasn’t much of a surprise seeing as there were only 2 acts on the bill. The cool thing was, a lot of people seemed to be at the show for both acts, rather than just the headliner which is always great to see.

Dressed in a 70s-esque cow girl themed two-piece, Swedish-born Tove Styrke entered the stage as the crowd screamed. Acting cool and calm as she always seems to look, she boomed straight into her music swishing that long hair. Her energy was clearly contagious as the crowd became electric through her music and wonderful stage presence – especially because they’d been waiting an hour and a half since the doors opened!

If there was a theme tonight during her set, it was definitely the colour orange! Her wickedly talented guitarist and drummer were both dressed in bright orange.

There was a slight technical issue and a guitar had to be changed, but she used this time to chat to the audience. This was followed by a fantastic cover of Britney Spear’s Baby One More Time. In fact, I think this sent everybody crazy!

By the time she performed Ego the whole crowd was loving her up-beat tracks and the whole performance in general. After 30 minutes of non-stop awesomeness, she bowed a couple of times and left the stage.

That. was. amazing.

Years & Years are hot right now in the music world, and tonight’s packed out (sold out!) audience just proves how well this trio are doing. “Olly” was being chanted over and over as the bass guitarist Mikey Goldsworthy, and synthesizer player Emre Türkmen took to the stage, along with two female backing singers and a drummer (whose kit was covered in gold coloured glitter!). Finally Olly appeared dressed in a Chicago Bulls t-shirt and short blonde hair to a thunderous applause which made him smile and seem almost child-like (though he does only look about 13 anyway up on that stage!).

Red lights and electropop fueled the atmosphere as they went straight into Foundation. As Olly shouted “What’s up Nottingham?” the whole venue erupted in to noise. I thought earlier the atmosphere was electric, but this was ten times more so.

Olly noticed a girl’s 16th Birthday balloon and said, “Let’s give her a nice Birthday” and went straight into Desire. Later on he grabbed the girl up on stage to sit with him whilst he played the piano for Eyes Shut. She was extremely overwhelmed and excited but sang along like an absolute pro.

The lighting effects (and I mean we’re talking LED lights at the back) were breathtaking. Actually, the whole lighting was spectacular because of how well it all worked together. I was actually quite impressed!

Other tracks performed were Shine, Without, a cover of Blu Cantrell’s Breathe, Border and Real. They then all left quickly for the encore with fans shouting “We want more!”. Oh, they knew they were going to get more because they were waiting for a particular song!

When they did get back on stage, Olly mentioned playing Rock City a year ago along with Clean Bandit, and then they boomed into King before leaving the crowd wanting even more. Luckily for them, they’ve already announced another UK tour for next year!

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