Young Guns, London HMV Forum

The Forum still feels quite spacious when opening act Dangerous! take to the stage, although this doesn’t seem to bother the Aussie mob in the slightest. It’s clear they’re aware that not many of the audience here tonight have heard of them (yet), but their animated set kicks the evening off brilliantly, with people down the front bouncing along eagerly, and even a few nodding heads from the token “crossed-arms brigade” lingering by the bar. With their original brand of stirring indie rock, three-piece The Xcerts bring a unique and refreshing quality to the evening. Frontman Murray Macleod’s passionate vocals are a highlight, giving the band’s set a certain rawness which lends itself so well to a live setting. Unfortunately for tonight’s main support act, Every Avenue, luck is not on their side. Only a few songs into their set, guitarist Jimmie Deeghan badly injures his foot. However, this isn’t enough to stop him from playing the show, and after just minute or two, the Detroit pop-punkers continue without further ado. The time that the band spend on stage is thoroughly enjoyable – they are fun, lively, and have the whole crowd jumping and singing along to the wonderfully catchy “Tell Me I’m A Wreck” within a matter of seconds. Of course, Young Guns are the reason why everyone is here on this particular Friday night at the HMV Forum. This is their biggest headline show to date, and considering that London is also the band’s hometown, it’s no wonder why frontman Gustav Wood looks like he might actually burst with excitement when the five-piece finally appear on the stage. The band claim the stage as entirely theirs with powerful opener “Elements”, and next song “Sons of Apathy” sees the crowd yelling back the chorus and fist-punching the air enthusiastically. However, what Young Guns really didn’t need tonight, was for the lighting to bomb out just two songs into their set. They depart the stage whilst the venue’s technical staff do their best to resolve the situation, but to no avail. If this was another band, it could be quite possible that they decide to pull the show. But Young Guns are letting nothing ruin this night, and go ahead as planned with some makeshift spotlights. And it’s a very good job that they do, too, because the next 45 minutes or so really showcases how far this band have come, and just how much they deserve to be on that stage. From old favourite “There Will Be Rain” to new song “Bones”, the band’s energy levels never falter, and not once do they break their intense connection with the crowd. As Young Guns’ set draws to a close with the anthemic “Weight Of The World”, with the whole audience singing so loud that there’s almost no need for any microphones, it’s a wonderful moment to behold. Because on that stage, is an honest, hard-working band who are most definitely on their way to much bigger things. And nothing can stop them now.