@ Leeds University

For a virgin at an Athlete gig I must say it wasn’t a disappointment. Unlike Ross, and probably cos I’m a girl (!), I really enjoyed Tourist as much as Vehicles & Animals. He’s right about Beyond The Neighbourhood being a combination of the two albums. The boys came across as extremely unassuming and real, they don’t seem to have jumped onto the bandwagon of stardom and could have been playing in their garage!

The mix of all songs brought the audience from melancholy to crescendo throughout the gig, time for the hot and sweaty bodies to cool which is so synonymous with Leeds University Union!

It wasn’t a full house but that certainly didn’t take anything away from the atmosphere the boys created with their distinctive style of not only music but clever lighting too. Athlete’s fans are definitely not all in London and still pulling the crowds in the North after their absence from the scene.

Audience participation was throughout and songs off the new album including the new single ‘Hurricane’ were well received, however it was the anthemic ‘Wired’ & ’24 Hours’ that lifted the roof.

The penultimate song of the encore ‘Beautiful’ summed up what was a well received, well presented and in my opinion a fantastic gig and not to be confused with James Blunt!

As Ross states “I’m still enjoying this band, for the sense of genuineness I hear in the lyrics and the steadfast plodding away at their personal preoccupations”. If you don’t already have the new album, get it now, you won’t be disappointed!

Helen Irving

Photos – Amy Irving