Review: Everything Everything at O2 Academy Brixton, London

After a showcase gig at Oval space this summer, Manchester four-piece Everything Everything are nearly at the end of their UK tour with a benchmark gig at O2 Academy Brixton. 

They are no longer the young hipsters we saw at Rough Trade in 2010. They have clearly honed their conceptual and eccentric song writing into a trademark sound which is cleverly stylised and full of hooks to engage an ever-growing fan base across the UK. 


Opening with To The Blade, the first track from their latest studio album Get To Heaven, the anthemic vocals and driving rhythms set the pace and get the crowd roaring into a sing-along that would continue throughout the whole show.  Cloaked in a biblical style tunic, front man Jonathan Higgs embraces the falsetto vocals he is so well known for on Kemosabe, as the audience shout along ‘hey’ like a prayer had been answered, before suitably moving onto joyful track Get To Heaven.  The band bring out psychedelic pop band Stealing Sheep as backing singers for Regret, adding more layers to the rich harmonies, as the stage is basked in equally rich orange and yellow, and the Liverpool trio move like the shadows of animals in an African sunrise. 


The first nod to their debut album Man Alive comes with Schoolin’ as the crowd whistle along with validation that they’ve been fans from the beginning.  As the pace lowers briefly for Fortune 500 and the bass thickens, the call and response of the track is a suitable tribute to the unapologetic nature of the thousands of doting fans who have taken no respite in singing along to every word to every song so far.  It’s clear that this pinnacle Brixton show is as much for the fans as the band, as they move away from their newest material to bound through huge tracks from their previous album Arc including Radiant, Don’t Try and Cough Cough, a track which showcases their signature jolting rhythms and acrobatic melodies. A pinch of nostalgia comes next with one of their first ever singles Photoshop Handsome, before finishing the main set with Spring / Sun / Winter / Dread.

As Everything Everything exit the stage there’s not one person who flees the crowd, illustrating the strong bond and belief that the fans have with this band.  The venue echoes with a football match style Mexican wave of cheer to coax the band back on stage for the encore. The band ditch their smart attire, arrive back on stage in their trademark matching red bomber jackets and break into No Reptiles, as the audience bond to the unashamedly surreal lyrics such as ‘It’s alright to feel like a fat child in a push chair, old enough to run….’.  The crowd then yelp with joy as they are rewarded with the first track from their first album MY KZ, UR BF which they all sing at each other in winning confirmation.


The set ends with the summer single Distant Past, encouraging a party atmosphere with its Balearic style house chords and electronic samples. It feels as if Everything Everything are celebrating just how far they have actually come, and the whole venue is jumping along in agreement.  They may be supporting Foals on their upcoming tour, but with this epic performance they are also galloping right behind them.

Everything Everything, O2 Academy Brixton, 20/11/15

Catch Everything Everything supporting Foals in February 2016, book now at