A year since their last appearance in Southampton, it seemed fitting that The Courteeners came back to celebrate their new album release and new found fame in style.
The Mancunian band opened the set with two new songs from their latest album Mapping The Rendezvous: ‘Not for Tomorrow’ and ‘Modern Love’. This was a strange opening to their usual chaotic show as both these songs are relatively slow. However, famous singles ‘Are You In Love With an Notion’ and ‘Cavorting’ brought the room to life and got the crowd going.
Mapping The Rendezvous took centre stage in a set list dedicated to the new release. And the record proved to be a big hit amongst fans. The crowd were singing along to every song and you could feel the sense of belonging their music brings to everyone in the room.
However, it seemed that the die-hard fans of the band weren’t really there to see them play the new stuff. This led to the atmosphere being slightly tainted. There were flares being set off left, right and centre, and then there were gangs of people going to the bar to grab another drink to pass the time.
Partway through the night frontman Liam Fray took to the stage for a solo acoustic performance. He played three slow, singalong songs ‘Please Don’t’, ‘De La Salle’ and ‘Smiths Disco’ showing that there is versatility to their sound. The rest of the band came back on stage after this set was over, to perform the last four songs of the night. Fray introduced the penultimate song ‘Not Nineteen Forever’, saying “This one’s for everyone that’s nineteen!” which caused a huge uproar from the crowd.
There have certainly been better gigs, but The Courteeners will always hold a special place in everyone’s hearts. God Bless the Band.
Words By Elisha Cloughton