Everything Everything at The Wedgewood Rooms, Portsmouth, 24th August 2022
I think it’s fair to say that the past two years have been pretty rough for us all. The live music scene has certainly had its share of struggles since the initial outbreak of Covid-19, but amongst the endless doom and gloom there is cause for optimism.
Back in the summer of 2020, the Revive Live campaign (a partnership between The National Lottery and Music Venue Trust) launched to help independent venues survive post-Covid. Its mission is to support UK grass roots venues by bringing big artists to intimate crowds, and well, so far so good.
Manchester art rock heavyweights Everything Everything grace the Wedge’s stage tonight to a sold-out crowd, but first up we have Hayden Thorpe. Performing as a solo act, Hayden conjures up a calming atmosphere which is unfortunately punctured by the gathering crowd’s constant chatting. However, Hayden seems unphased for the most part and looks to be enjoying himself. Good for him.
Having only heard a handful of tracks from Everything Everything’s six album discography, I’m told that their latest album Raw Data Feel is one of their best. Luckily then tonight’s set leans heavily on that cache of tunes. Teletype kicks things off, and the crowd are immediately singing along to every word and dancing like they’re VIP guests at the world’s greatest indie-disco circa 2005.
Watching the set unfold at a steady pace, I feel that Everything Everything are a band that is greater than the sum of its parts. Michael Spearman’s drums are loud, punchy and straight to the point. This approach then complements Jeremy Pritchard’s tight rolling bass grooves, whilst Alex Robertshaw’s efficient yet effective guitar leads provide plenty of texture and dynamics to songs like Jennifer and Night of the Long Knives.
Singer Jonathan Higgs’s passionate falsetto vocal delivery rounds off the Everything Everything sound, and it’s during Kemosabe where it really shines. The crowd sing along loudly, and Higgs can’t help but smile throughout as his words are pelted back at the band with more enthusiasm than I’m used to seeing these days.
Now, I have already admitted to not being well-versed on the subject of Everything Everything’s back catalogue. However, the last three songs of the main set are really impressive. Here we get the triple threat ‘bangers’ Bad Friday, Cough Cough and I Want A Love Like This. Each track is a total ear worm, and I’ve had them stuck in my head since the show. I Want A Love Like This in particular gets my vote as Robertshaw moves over to play synth, and Higgs’s voice soars during the chorus. I feel alive indeed.
We had to leave before the encore sadly, but judging by the band’s performance tonight, I would say Everything Everything are a solid and enjoyable live act, and it was fun seeing them play on a smaller stage. So, support the Revive Live campaign, support your local independent music venue and maybe knock the chat on the head whilst the acts are performing.
Words by Ryan Howarth
Photos by Hannah Mesquitta
31st August 2022