On February 6th, Liverpudlian indie legend Miles Kane arrived in Southampton as part of his ‘One Man Band tour’. Despite the horrendously wet weather outside, Kane’s unique blend of indie-glam rock instantly lifted the spirits of the sold-out crowd.
But first, Wrexham four-piece The Royston Club took to the stage. Following on from their Top 20 debut album ‘Shaking Hips and Crashing Cars’ back in June, their indie rock sound certainly doesn’t reinvent the wheel, but they were a lot of fun with several irresistibly catchy choruses and frontman Tom Faithful’s showmanship.
A feeling of déjà vu came upon me as I entered Southampton’s Engine Rooms for this gig. Not far off two years prior, I saw Miles Kane rock the same venue as part of his ‘Change the Show’ tour. The night’s setlist was quite rapidly different, with no songs from that album surviving, instead replaced with almost the entirety of ‘One Man Band.’
It makes sense. Kane’s live show was elevated greatly last year with the additions of brass musicians to his live band two years ago, something necessary to properly show off ‘Change the Show’ in all its glory, but it would not make financial sense to keep them for just a couple of songs this time around. ‘One Man Band’ is an album that goes back to Kane’s roots, the kind of chorus-heavy indie rock that always goes down well in live shows no matter if the audience knows the material well or not.
From the moment he came on to ‘Troubled Son’, it was clear that, as always, Kane had the crowd in the palm of his hand. In my mind, he’s been one of the UK’s best live rock performers for over a decade now, with his infectious energy and relatable “lad” energy constantly ensuring that the crowd’s eyes are firmly on him – if they’re not in the middle of a moshpit.
Rocking through almost the entire setlist with little time for chat, it really was a show for the ‘latest and greatest’ of his discography. While the ‘One Man Band’ album tracks certainly didn’t stand out in the same way as those from ‘Change the Show’ did two years ago, leading to several songs blurring into one – when Kane gets it right, he really gets it right.
The final third of the show was pure anthem after anthem, ranging from the glam sounds of ‘Cry on My Guitar’ and ‘Coup de Grace’ from 2018, to the monster riff of ‘Never Taking Me Alive’. Finishing, as always, with the 1-2 punch of ‘Come Closer’ and ‘Don’t Forget Who You Are’, it’s clear that Kane knows exactly what his audience wants and will consistently deliver it to them in electric fashion.
Miles Kane’s ‘One Man Band’ tour continues at Brighton’s Concorde 2 tomorrow (February 8th), before finishing at the Electric Ballroom in London on February 9th. Tickets can be purchased here.