Keane @ Symphony Hall Birmingham, 24 September 2019


Just four days after the release of their new studio album ‘Cause and Effect’, tonight was the first date on Keane’s 2019 UK tour and their first proper show in seven years. There was certainly something to prove, and they proved it.

The show opened with the characteristic sound of the piano that has separated Keane from many of their peers – since the piano is in place of, and not in addition to, guitars. They were shrouded in blue shadow until near the end of first song ‘You’re Not Home’ at which point the lights went up and the band came into full view. They’re looking fashionable, fit and there are some incredibly tight jeans!

For second song ‘Bend and Break’ fans were already up singing and dancing, and they remained that way throughout. It was a high-energy set and it was clear that Keane were ‘Keane’ to be out on the road again (sorry!). Vocalist and front man Tom Chaplin was charismatic and humorous and had a great rapport with the fans.

Visually the show started simple with small rectangles of light behind the band, complimenting a larger lit screen. As the show went on though there was more to look at. Many of the songs had visuals and videos playing on the screen. The visuals really added to the dynamism of the performance and contributed to high points like ‘Stupid Things’ and ‘Perfect Symmetry’. Both are great songs and the band were super tight and energetic.

The setlist took us through highlights from the back catalogue including ‘Everybody’s Changing’ and ‘Spiralling’, as well as some of the best songs from the new album in ‘Strange Room’ and ‘Put the Radio On’; both of which showcased Tom’s fabulous vocals. Songs ‘I need your love’ and ‘Perfect symmetry’ allowed the rest of the band to showcase their vocals too, and they were a welcome addition. Singer Tom said they’d actually picked out 43 songs they wanted to play again and, whilst we didn’t get all of them, they did play a two-hour show. Plenty of bang for your buck!

The main set finished with fan favourite ‘Somewhere Only We Know’. After a short break the band came back to the stage for a three-song encore culminating in star-like spotlights around the hall and singing along to ‘Sovereign Light Café’.

Whether you’re an old or new fan of the band, their performance is worth seeing. The pop/rock sound is easy to listen to and you’ll see how their sound has grown and developed over the past 15 years.

Setlist

  1. You’re Not Home
  2. Bend and Break
  3. Silenced by the Night
  4. Chase the Night Away
  5. You Are Young
  6. I’m Not Leaving
  7. Everybody’s Changing
  8. Is It Any Wonder?
  9. Strange Room
  10. Put the Radio On
  11. Perfect Symmetry
  12. Spiralling
  13. Phases
  14. Atlantic
  15. Stupid Things
  16. Nothing in My Way
  17. Love Too Much
  18. This Is the Last Time
  19. Bedshaped
  20. The Way I Feel
  21. Somewhere Only We Know

……………..

  1. I Need Your Love
  2. Crystal Ball
  3. Sovereign Light Café

 

Reviewer: Chrissie Duxson

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