Tag Archives: Performance

I Love Manchester

“Following last month’s tragic incident, and the subsequent temporary closure of the main area outside the venue, Blink-182’s forthcoming concert on Friday 14 July will no longer be able to take place here at Manchester Arena.
We apologise for not being able to stage this event and for the inconvenience caused to Blink-182’s Manchester fans.
Blink-182 have announced that they will play Manchester Castlefield Bowl on Friday 14th July 2017. This show replaces their cancelled concert at Manchester Arena on the same date.”


I have not attended a gig since before the events of 22nd May 2017. The last gig I went to was Maximo Park at Albert Hall on 19th May, just days before that awful night. Although I was not at the Arena when the attack took place, this was something that shook our entire city, our home, my home.

I have been lucky enough to attend concerts at many venues over the years. I was around 4 years old at my first ever concert at G-Mex (Manchester Central), and I was 7 years old when I went to my first gig at Manchester Arena, or as we knew it back then, “Nynex”.

I hold many of Manchester’s venues dear, and the Arena is one of those places. No matter who you’re about to watch, as soon as you walk through those doors into the dark it takes hold of you. It’s so exciting! It’s part of what makes going to live gigs and events so special. No matter your age, taste, colour, background or beliefs, there is something for everyone, not just at the Arena but in all our live venues. That’s part of what made 22nd May 2017 even more devastating; thousands of young people with friends and relatives just having the best time, unaware and oblivious that their lives were about to be cruelly snatched away from them so fast. However, we must all keep going to these events, keep enjoying ourselves, and most importantly, keep on living!


I recall some of my favourite concerts at Manchester Arena, and there have been so many… Roger Waters, Electric Light Orchestra, Foo Fighters, Arcade Fire, Fleetwood Mac, The Who, Arctic Monkeys, Kings of Leon, Slipknot, Give It A Name Festival 2006, and to bring me to my next gig (while also being fond memory) – Blink-182.


As the message at the start of this post reads, Blink-182 will now be performing their show at Castlefield Bowl tomorrow evening. I have not been there for a gig since d:percussion in 2006! Castlefield Bowl has hosted some absolutely outstanding acts recently; James, Blossoms, Arcade Fire to name but a few, and I’m sure Blink will not let us down!

Blink-182 are without Tom DeLonge, which for some people may be a positive thing, but I’ve always adored Tom and his instantly recognisable tones… (“WHERRREEEE ARRRRREEEE YOUUUUUU?!” If you know, you know…!) However, I’m really looking forward to hearing them perform with Matt Skiba of Alkaline Trio, and I’ve definitely enjoyed their new music together so far.


Blink-182 fill me with nostalgia. I’ve listened to them since I was around 12 or 13 years old after listening to their songs mostly via The Mark, Tom and Travis Show (The Enema Strikes Back). I can’t wait to see them again and I hope to hear some of my old favourites.

Anyway, I highly doubt that I will be in a position to write a post-gig review after tomorrow night… I’ve invested in a hip flask…!

I will leave you all with two YouTube links. The first is one of my favourite Blink songs… the second video is for all those who were affected either directly or indirectly by the events on 22nd May 2017 at Manchester Arena. Tony Walsh’s poem, “This Is The Place”.

I love Manchester.

Blink-182 – “Aliens Exist” – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=672WYeU1f4U
Tony Walsh – “This Is The Place” – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_r0L3VjkFsc


Vaults at The Deaf Institute, Manchester

Formed in 2013, Vaults are an electronic trio hailing from Hertfordshire and South London and are currently touring their debut album “Caught In Still Life”. Known for tracks such as “One Last Night” which starred in the huge Hollywood hit film Fifty Shades of Grey, and more recently a cover of “One Day I’ll Fly Away” on the John Lewis Christmas advert of 2016, Vaults are becoming even more successful.

First up on stage at the Deaf Institute, a Grade II-listed beautiful and quaint Manchester venue, was Hannah Peel. Born in Northern Ireland but speaking softly in a subtle South Yorkshire accent, she took to the stage and blew us away. From the incredibly upbeat show-starter “All That Matters” to a stunning cover of “Cars In The Garden” by Paul Buchanan of The Blue Nile, Hannah Peel brought back memories of some of Imogen Heap’s very early work. Peel used just her voice and a music box to perform “Cars In The Garden”, and this was one of the most captivating moments of the set. In what was a completely solo performance using various instruments from synths to the violin, Peel demonstrated real, genuine talent.

Hannah Peel

Next up were headline act, Vaults. Beginning with “Cry No More”, this was the track that lifted the band after it received over 100,000 plays in just a week on SoundCloud when first uploaded in 2015. The song captured the audience right away from the mesmerising glockenspiel intro, to Blythe’s vocals all combined with superb musical layering.

Vaults Live 1
Vaults at Deaf Institute

A full one-hour set followed, including stand-out tracks such as “Premonitions”, “Lifespan”, “One Last Night”, and “Hurricane”. I was taken aback by the sheer musical ability overall as well as Blythe’s strong, sometimes eerie melodies throughout the show. The performance was emotive and it was evident in the reaction of the audience, with each and every single person taking it all in.

Vaults Live 2

As the band were only on a small stage there was no need for a real encore where everyone wanders backstage to come back minutes later. As such, Vaults continued with the amazing “Midnight River”, a soulful, energetic number with a great hook, and most likely a firm favourite for the audience. The final song of the night was “Blood Flow”, offering a vibrant end to the night with pounding percussion.

This was a thoroughly enjoyable sell-out show at one of Manchester’s finest indie venues. For avid fans or for people with no prior knowledge of their music, Vaults certainly left an impression.

Cry No More
One Last Night
Mend This Love
The Valley
Midnight River
Blood Flow

Check out Vaults – Midnight River here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Hz5-i51Khg