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Review | 5 Seconds of Summer at Sheffield Motorpoint Arena
They’re Kinda Hot Though...
Back by popular demand, 5 Seconds of Summer return for another world tour less than a year after the vast success of 2015's 'Rock Out With Your Socks Out Tour'. Performing a variety of old and new songs from their second album, Sounds Good Feels Good, the 'pop-rock 1D' kick-started their 'Sounds Live Feels Live World Tour in the UK at Sheffield Motorpoint Arena on April 5.
Blink 182, Wheatus and Red Hot Chili Peppers played on the speakers to set the pop-punk mood as tribes of screaming fans in their 5SOS tour tees (and many a parent) piled into the arena.
Supporting the four Aussie lads was a youthful Californian, Jessarae, whose delicate voice and charming boy-next-door looks proved popular with the crowd - announcing he personally giving away ten free CDs at the merch stand after his set, Jessarae caused quite a stampede of eager admirers desperate to be the first in line.
As the houselights went down and phone torches went up, deafening screams echoed throughout the arena as the shadows of 5SOS took up their respective positions behind guitars, microphones and drum kits. Beginning their set, the easy-on-the-eye lead, Luke Hemmings, opened with the harmonious hidden track on their album, Carry On. The boys next kicked things up a notch with their lively single Hey Everybody! which got the audience up and moving.
Clad in black skinnies, tees and vests, Luke, Calum, Ashton and Michael greeted Sheffield with an impromptu song. Michael, in an unbuttoned black and red chequered shirt, improvised lyrics while the others followed suit with guitars and drums in hand. Being the opening night of the UK tour, a jet-lagged Calum joked Sheffield was their best UK audience so far, drawing an approving cheer before delving into the energetic, feel-good single Don’t Stop.
With stubbled faces, a collection of new tattoos and a newly-hench Ashton sporting some impressive biceps, the 5SOS boys looked a little more rugged than their previous tour. Breaking away from the pristine cleanliness of typical boy-band culture, the lads bounced around stage in true pop/punk style, sweating while blasting out fierce guitar solos magnified on three large ripped-effect screens.
Simplistic lighting lit the minimalistic set, with the stage being propelled into darkness following each song to allow for a change of filter and strobe lights illuminating the animated musicians.
Luke and Calum’s vocals were on top form, Michaels’s guitar skills like no other, and Ashton’s fast-paced drumming second only to Travis Barker. It’s clear the multi-talented group can not only write and produce their own music, but likewise perform brilliantly live. Screeching girls and guys alike swooned when their favourite band member would take centre-stage for numerous solos, but none so as impressive as Michael’s seemingly effortless guitar solo during Castaway which caused the crowd to pump their fists in unison to the beat.
Things definitely heated up when Michael and Luke got a little close during 'End Up Here' as Michael leaned in towards Luke allowing him to strum his guitar for a few steamy seconds. Michael also enjoyed another brief moment of bromance with Calum, affectionately stroking his face as he serenaded 'Permanent Vacation' to him, getting the fans all hot and bothered.
One fan particularly felt hot under the collar when Luke noticed him wearing a bright blue and yellow superhero costume similar to that in the boys’ music video for 'Don’t Stop'. “Who dared you to wear that?” Luke asked, putting a spotlight on the masked middle-aged hero for all to appreciate.
Saving the best until last, the four returned onstage for an encore, playing 'She’s Kinda Hot' and finishing with their mega-hit single 'She Looks So Perfect' which had everyone, even the parents, singing along. Taking their final bows, the boys bid farewell to Sheffield before throwing their picks and drum sticks into a scrambling mosh-pit of super-fans.
Every note was hit, every solo smashed: 'Sounds Live Feels Live' definitely Sounds Good Feels Good. Judging by their first UK stop on their world tour, it’s going to be sunny spells for the rest of the venues this summer, even if it’s just for 5 seconds.
Words: Tom RichardsonTom Richardson is a Hull-based writer – keep up with his him on his blog The Rich-T Room and follow him on Twitter@Tom20Richardson.More stories:Caitlyn Jenner ‘not comfortable’ with idea of gender confirmation surgeryIn pics | Gay rugby players head to the locker room for MEAT Zine