Date: April 21st, 2012
Venue: Academy 2, Manchester
Support: Super Prime / The Summer Set
I’ve been told many times over the years that I have the music taste of a 14-year-old girl, but never has this been more apparant than tonight. As I sit in the bar with a pint of cider, waiting for the doors to open, suddenly a stampede of screaming teenagers tears through the University of Manchester Students Union and head to Academy 2 where tonight, pop-punk quintet We Are The In Crowd will entertain a room filled with teenage girls, their boyfriends and one bearded 22-year-old: me.
First up tonight are Boston-based trio, Super Prime (***) boasting a set towards the heavier end of the pop-punk spectrum; think Blink-182 but with more guitar work. The vocal performance from frontman Adam Newall is impressive throughout, but is sadly brought down by the lackluster offerings of Austin Bond whose singing only adds to the song when Newall harmonises along with him. The crowd laugh at the All Time Low style dynamic on stage, making jokes about each others mums, etc. However, other than this they don’t really get involved until a cover of Fall Out Boy‘s ‘Sugar, We’re Goin’ Down’ is played and goes down a treat. A solid performance, but not enough to warm up the crowd, with songs such as ‘Vow’ falling a little flat.
Up next are Arizona pop-rockers The Summer Set (****), who after an enthusiastic reception from the crowd churn out a set of catchy choruses, keeping the everyone dancing throughout. A rocky start for vocalist Brian Dales risks him being drowned out by his fellow bandmates, but this is soon fixed, and tearing through the likes of ‘Young’ and ‘Chelsea’ picks up the pace, and throughout ‘Must Be The Music’ the crowd jump and clap along. Despite guitarist Josh Montgomery being knocked out the night before in Newcastle, the band still pull off a great show.
An ear-splitting scream greets headliners We Are The In Crowd (****), who waste no time whipping the crowd into a frenzy with set opener and hit single, ‘Rumor Mill’. Tay Jardine keeps everyone’s focus as she dances across the stage, her voice soaring over what is being screamed back at her. Unfortunately, fellow vocalist Jordan Eckes‘s voice isn’t powerful enough and tends to get drowned out by the crowd. The enthusiasm of everybody in the room is relenless, especially when Brian Dales returns to the stage to fill in for All Time Low‘s Alex Gaskarth on new release, ‘Kiss Me Again’.
The encore consists of an impressive duet by Jardine and Eckes on ballad-like number ‘Got It Made’ before they blow everyone away with crowd favourite, ‘Both Sides Of The Story’. After that performance, leaving tonight are a group of very happy teenage girls, their boyfriends… and one bearded 22-year-old: me.
Written by Jonathon Barlow