Kings of Leon at 02 Arena Greenwich 1.7.2022 with The Snuts supporting
The first of three gigs in three nights and the weekend after five days at Glastonbury (Gig buddy Dave is setting the pace). I am just about back recovered to ‘gig fitness’. Glad we are seated though – back of the lower tier, quite well forward up the right-hand side. Great view. I’ve never stood on the main floor of the O2, I’ve had a seat there, but everyone stands up anyway so it’s quite a challenge to see well.
I’ve done a handful of gigs here and keep out of the upper tiers and it’s fine. O2 phone contracts get you into the Blueroom bars before and that is always welcome – get in early for a seat. It’s a massive venue yes but if that’s where performers are going to play, it’s take it or leave it.
What’s odd to me is that Kings of Leon fill this place. A great sound. A solid band. Stadium rock? I don’t get it. This is the first of two nights here. To be fair I don’t have enough familiarity with the band. Who am I to judge?
I saw them in Birmingham Resorts World (The NEC) in February 2017 and that was full then. Good solid rock’n’roll, from the US music heartlands of Nashville, but I haven’t been moved to explore much and that makes me badly out of touch. Doesn’t stop a good night out mind, although I will have to be brief on detail.
The Snuts are tonight’s support, from West Lothian. Indie rockers with a variety of pace and a set that very much keeps the interest.
Frontman Jack Cochrane has a voice that at times slows and raises pitch to sound a bit like Passenger I thought. Variety is the key and with an 11 song support slot there is plenty there to admire. I would seek them out again.
They finish with Glasgow, their first proper single. It’s a good’un.
They had their first album out in April 2021 and a new album is on its way this Autumn. That’s going to be worth a listen.
The Kings of Leon emerge. Not easy to see though, especially in the early part of the set.
Occasionally the lighting allows more of a glimpse of where the good sounds are emanating from but it’s all a bit of a gloomy scene for this big place. A lot of bright back lighting hampers a decent view of the band.
(I only recently realised the band includes three brothers and a cousin. All Followills.)
I don’t know their set list – some are more familiar but I couldn’t put a name to them. The crowd love it. There’s even a scrap down the front which stops the show: what is this? The villain is offered up by the crowd and manhandled over the barrier into the pit before being led away by that many security he could be Hannibal Lecter.
Frontman Caleb Followill comments at one point about playing gigs where they are more popular than anywhere….they do seem to have hit the spot with the UK.
It’s only at the end of the main set when they do Use Somebody that I can name one and then they are off.
The encores dutifully follow: Revelry, The Bucket and, how could they leave without playing it, Sex is on Fire.
I guess it must be hard for them to leave a venue without playing it, such is its status. They’re here again tomorrow, different support (The Vaccines). I’m off to Tottenham in the morning.