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The Zutons

The Zutons – Engine Rooms, Southampton

There’s no phrase further than the truth than ‘a sleepy Sunday’ to describe the night at Engine Rooms this last Sunday night in Southampton. The Zutons were in town and Southampton showed up. It wasn’t quite a sold out show, but it felt like one, and the crowd brought their dancing shoes with them for this one.

The lineup tonight showcased some of Liverpool’s finest Indie music, and first up was Casino, a 5-piece made up of Dillon Kelly (vocals), Anton Jackson (bass), Tom Donoghue (guitar), Oliver Stone (keys) and Jamie Wild (drums). The lads were very engaging with their strong Liverpudlian accent, of which Kelly did mention he’d been told to slow down his talking because of it, to the crowds amusement. They really got the crowd going – it was hard not to move to their bluesy beats. Mid-set they played a newly recorded song which took the tone down a notch to a calmer vibe, but brought it back up and ended the set again on a high with a bit more energy and a lot of crowd participation with clapping all round. It was a shame their set came to an end when it did, as it felt like they were really getting into things a bit more on stage by the second half of the set, but overall it was a great performance and Casino proved to be the perfect support for The Zutons with their style reminiscent of the main acts’.

Photo Credit – Alia Thomas

As already mentioned, the show overall had a very good turnout. The Zutons formed over 20 years ago, and their following is large and varied in age. The band, made up of Dave McCabe (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), Sean Payne (drums, backing vocals) and Abi Harding (sax, backing vocals) were joined by Neil Bradley (keys, backing vocals), Jay Lewis (lead guitar, backing vocals) and Tim Cunningham (bass) to complete the full Zutons sound. The Zutons lit up the stage with a varied setlist including a number of songs from their new album ‘The Big Decider’ such as ‘Creeping on the Dancefloor’, ‘Pauline’ and a beautiful acoustic performance of ‘Best of Me’, mixed in amongst older favourites such as ‘Zuton Fever’, ‘Dirty Dancehall’, ‘Why Won’t You Give Me Your Love’ and the Dave McCabe penned original of ‘Valerie’, which was propelled into the stratosphere by Amy Winehouse & Mark Ronson’s cover version – this number unsurprisingly got the whole crowd going wild. They sang it back with vigour, with arms in the air amongst a sea of mobile phones videoing the performance. Around the edges of the crowd there were a number of people twirling around and dancing their way through the evening. A lovely sight to behold. The band may have only recently made their comeback with new music, but I think it’s safe to say that there’s still very much a place for The Zutons music today.

Photo Credit – Alia Thomas

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