The Vamps Up Close & Personal Tour

Monday, July 10, 2017

the vamps tour review night and day showcase

Little over two months since The Vamps were last on tour, around UK arenas for the 'Middle Of The Night' tour, they were back on the road for a more intimate set of gigs. The 'Up Close & Personal Tour' showcased all the tracks from their new album released this Friday, and performed in smaller academies, rather than the large arenas they were used to, for a more acoustic setting.

General admission tickets were only £12 for the matinee show at Manchester Academy on Saturday, 8th July so of course I jumped at the chance to go and see them again - my sixth time seeing The Vamps, could you believe? It seemed a similar tour to their Fanfests in 2015, where they played songs from their second album Wake Up, before the album was released, so fans can hear the new music early.

Being at the Academy the concert was all standing, therefore I tried to get there as early as possible. Unfortunately because of train strikes this may not have been as early as I would have liked but two hours is a long enough queueing experience for me - especially because I had already queued four hours for the Wow Pit on the last tour.

Doors opened just after two thirty and even though I seemed quite a way down the queue I managed to be pretty much in the middle, about six or seven rows back. My view wasn't dissimilar to when I saw McFly at the academy last September, although at McFly there wasn't as many tall people in front of me and didn't seem as squished.

Their support act, an Irish group called Taken came on not much more than five minutes after I got in, which was good because I wasn't stood around waiting for ages. They didn't play instruments or anything so they weren't that exciting but they did get the crowd going with a cover of Shape Of You and some originals. Not the best support act ever, but they weren't The Tide, The Vamps' usual support, so anything other than them is a relief.

It was then time for The Vamps, who began with new song 'Hands', which the crowd knew because it was released a few weeks ago. This was followed by their single Middle Of The Night which Brad played on the piano. Being in an intimate location gave Brad a chance to have more banter with the crowd, including showing us the mug and the candle the stage was set up with.

They also treated us to some new songs that they hadn't played until this tour, such as Sad Song, which James said was 'ironic because it's not really', and It's A Lie, which I really liked because it seemed to have that classic Vamps sound their latest singles for me have been lacking.

They also played a cover of Niall Horan's Slow Hands, which got the crowd going more than anything, which was a shame because you'd expect a bunch of Vamps fans to go crazy over their songs, not Niall's. At this point I was really enjoying myself because I wasn't as squished as I had been and had room to dance around and take photos.

Then we came to Stay. The idea of Brad coming out into the middle of the crowd, while we all sat down silently watching him sing only his voice and his guitar, not even using a microphone, sounds pretty amazing on paper, but in reality?

 It's difficult to sit down when there's hardly enough room to stand - I'd either be sat on top of someone else or sat on someone's bag they decided to plonk on the floor and make less room for everyone. Then there's the shouting, swearing fans who are just down right inconsiderate of other fans and Brad who needs silence to be able to sing. Then, when I finally manage to sit down, everyone in front of me is on their knees so I can't even see Brad the whole time. James even had to step in and say if the crowd couldn't be quiet, they'd have to skip it - which finally shut everyone up. It was a lovely idea I think, just very difficult to control.

After the event that was Stay, Brad returned to the stage and the crowd returned to standing upright, although this lead to a surge of fans pushing forwards which I certainly wasn't pleased about. I knew one of my favourite new songs, Shades On, was coming up and I really wanted to enjoy it.

Shades On, played by Brad on the ukelele and Connor on his double bass 'Sheila', was mashed up with covers, but with a twist - they took artist requests from the front row of the audience, which was fun, although I definitely respect the fan who requested The Kooks more than those who opted for Justin Bieber and Liam Payne.
The band finished their set with All Night, which although isn't my favourite of theirs, was so good in an acoustic setting. By the end I was so squished I could hardly move so I was glad the set wasn't much longer than an hour! 

However I did really enjoy the show. I loved hearing all the new songs - it's definitely got me very excited for the new album and I liked it being in the afternoon too, it was so much easier coming home still light out!

Make sure you listen to The Vamps new album, Night & Day on Friday when it is released and I would love to hear if you've been to any concerts lately!


  1. AHH I'm so jealous. I haven't been to a concert in around 5 years and I'm dying to go to another one. I'm defo going to look up who's playing near me soon after this. xx Nikita

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  2. OMG am I the old person who has never heard of these guys before

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