Local legends Maximo Park returned to the North East, with Paul Smith and co given a heroes’ welcome as they rounded off their ‘Singular Tour’ at Newcastle’s O2 City Hall.
Kicking off the night is solitary support act, Dutch quartet, ‘Pip Blom’, who deliver an intruigingly upbeat set of bouncy indie tunes. They play a handful of songs from their latest album ‘Welcome Break’, as well as singles, ‘Come Home’ & ‘School’, with second track of the night ‘You Don’t Want This’, being particularly catchy.
Pip Blom return to the North East on Saturday 5th November for Waves Festival in Sunderland, before dates early next year in England and Scotland.
From the moment Paul Smith (quite literally) leaps onto the stage, trade-mark bowler hat sat firmly atop his head, the audience are fixated, as Smith swaggers, manoeuvres and poses as if possessed throughout.
He is joined by Duncan Lloyd on guitar, Tom English on drums, with touring members Andrew Lowther & Jemma Freese completing the line-up.
Dubbed ‘The Singular Tour’, tonight sees Maximo Park playing through their sizeable back catalogue of, you guessed it, singles.
Their setlist is full of hits that pack a nostalgic punch, yet somehow, songs from 2005’s ‘A Certain Trigger’ such as ‘The Coast is Always Changing’ and ‘Going Missing’ still sound fresh, a testament to the both the band’s live ability and the strength of said songs.
‘I Want You To Stay’ is given an extended introduction by Smith, as he recalls writing the song about “Being a Billingham lad and coming through to Newcastle for my first proper night out and just being overwhelmed by the lights of the city”.
There is much more to Maximo Park, as I’m sure you know, than the aforementioned album, with recent songs ‘Baby, Sleep’, ‘All of Me’ & ‘Versions of You’, from 2021’s ‘Nature Always Wins’ showcasing the variety and maturity they now posses.
Pre-encore finale track ‘Apply Some Pressue’ gets the manic reception you would expect from arguably their biggest hit, and the same can be said for the actual final song, ‘Graffiti’.
All in all, it was a canny night in the toon, as the crowd wander off into those same lights of the city, having witnessed something truly special.