Tonight, Bournemouth’s O2 academy was bursting with excitement for the sell-out gig from Manchester based four piece, The 1975.

First openers Wolf Alice delivered a set filled with hard-hitting drumbeats and psychedelic guitar rhythms; despite being unfortunately cut short by technical issues, the North London alternative indie band did not fail to impress leaving the audience stunned by Ellie Roswell’s vocals in particular.

Genre crossing ensemble, The Neighbourhood made their entrance afterward with blaring strobe lights and more intense production than the previous. Providing an evocative mix of rock elements with R&B and hip-hop aesthetics, the Californian group know how to keep a crowd transfixed. ‘Sweater Weather’ made trendy through social networking site Tumblr received a worthy reception, as well as their other catchy tracks ‘Female Robbery’, ‘Afraid’ and ‘WDYWFM.’

The stage filled with smoke; ambient sounds were booming from the speakers, strobe lights flashed round the room jam-packed with screaming girls and on walk The 1975. Playing in front of a simple backdrop in every day-like clothes with a levelheaded attitude, fame has not changed this group of boys from Cheshire. Opening their set with ‘The City’, squeals from fourteen-year-old girls were expected after the single received big love from pop’s hottest, Harry Styles via Twitter earlier last year.

Sipping at a bottle of wine, frontman and guitarist Matt Healy declares his love for Bournemouth, as it’s the first time they’ve ever played the Academy. Hammering out the first half of their set with pop-like choruses diversified with beguiling guitars and soft drums with fan favourites such as ‘Settle Down’, ‘Girls’ and ‘Heart Out’ sent the fans into frenzy. “You need to look after yourselves, every one’s being sick and getting kicked out” Healy proclaimed before the set itself ‘settles down’ into quieter, more hypnotising ambient instruments and vocals alike on tracks such as ‘You’, ‘Me’ and ‘Menswear.’

The band disappeared before chants of “we want more” mostly from females, echoed round the venue. Back to the stage again appearing rather coy, the quartet closed the set with ‘Chocolate’ and ‘Sex’ the two better-known singles featured on the self-titled album. The room went black, the band departed and it felt like being alive on Valentines Day was worth it.

Sarah El-saeidy.

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