WSTR are a pop-punk band from Liverpool, but despite this being their home country they’ve not been here in a while. They are hot off of a North American tour or two that’s seen them busy for the last few months, but I was excited to find out that they would be headlining one of my favourite venues, The Underworld in Camden. They’ve played the venue before but were on at 6pm and apparently played to about eight people. To then sell out their biggest ever headline show at the venue was a huge accomplishment and I was glad I’d get to be there for it.
Unfortunately, this shows doors were at 6pm also and I missed the first act, the amazing talented trio Hey Charlie but was in time to catch the next band up.
Between You and Me are a pop-punk outfit from Melbourne, Australia and they have made the journey to the UK to play their first ever show here. It was a great first show with an energetic set that contained plenty of catchy songs to get the crowd going.
Then the moment we had all been waiting for finally came, out strutted Sammy Clifford sporting his brand new, bright red hair. The band kicked right in with ‘Tell Me More’ and immediately the crowd went wild. They ignored the signs posted everywhere that said “no crowd surfing or stage diving” and before long there was a steady stream of kids surfing up to the stage and then diving off!
During the second song ‘Riddle Me This’ the bassist Alex Tobijanski tried to start the crowd clapping but the kids at the front weren’t really interested they were too busy dancing, crowd surfing or holding other kids up. I use the word kids literally as there was a very young crowd at this show.
By the time we got to the third song ‘The Latest’ everyone in sight was covered in sweat and I don’t know who was more exhausted the band or the crowd. Clifford informed us that this was only the second time they had played the song ever and mused over how awesome it was for us to be some of the first people to hear the new tracks here in the UK.
After another song, Clifford brought out his friend Tobi Duncan from the band Trash Boat and he took over vocals for the song ‘Footprints’, much to the fans’ delight. Apart from some mic problems, it was a great performance; everyone loves a good guest appearance.
However, they were not content with just one guest appearance and a few songs later during ‘Bad to the Bone’, Freddy Ramirez from the band PVMNTS joined in on vocals and gave a stellar performance. It seems like everybody who was anybody had come down to support WSTR at their biggest ever headline show.
During the performance of ‘Bad to the Bone’ both support bands came out to sing and dance along, but not on the tiny stage. Instead, they stood one band either side of me and danced their asses off. Why wouldn’t you, after all the guitar solo in this song is enough to get anyone moving.
At long last, they decided to take mercy on us and play a song with a little less tempo to slow it down give us a breather. ‘See You In Hell’ was, in fact, their only acoustic offering. Although it was too little too late because that was their last song and we could have done without that breather and just caught our breath in the five minutes it took for them to leave the stage and return for their encore. Which, no surprises, consisted of ‘Crisis’, ‘Silly Me’ and ‘Lonely Smiles’.
All in all, it was a really fun show that reminded me of seeing bands like New Found Glory and Blink-182 back in the day! It was full of energy and fun banter that hit the mark and I am already looking forward to seeing them play again whenever I get the chance.