Gig Review: Marmozets / Jamie Lenman – O2 Forum, London (19th October 2018)

Marmozets are one of my favourite bands and it has been great see them go from strength to strength over the years. On Friday night they played their biggest ever headline show at The Forum in Kentish Town – a huge step up from when I saw them play The Garage back in November last year. The show was their first (and only UK show) of a 10-date European tour and, although the show was not advertised as being sold out, the venue was packed, so it must have been close to capacity.

Jamie Lenman (c) Katie Frost
Jamie Lenman (c) Katie Frost

First to take to the stage was Jamie Lenman (ex-singer/guitarist/songwriter for a band called Reuben) who, together with his drummer, was dressed entirely in white. The duo played a riff-tastic, largely upbeat set which seemed to go down well with the crowd. Jamie played tracks from his debut album Muscle Memory as well as his latest album Devolver, closing with “Mississippi”.

There was a tangible sense of excitement in the room as close to 2000 people waited for Marmozets to step onto the stage. At the end of September the band took to Twitter to celebrate the four-year anniversary of the release of their debut album The Weird & Wonderful and told fans that “ as a celebration we are going to play some songs from both TW&W and Knowing What You Know Now that we’ve never played live before” – tonight’s show was certainly going to be special!

Marmozets (c) Katie Frost
Marmozets (c) Katie Frost

At around 9pm the band took to the stage; the boys looking smart in shirts, and vocalist Becca in a black dress – not her usual stage attire of jeans and a top. This show clearly meant a lot to the band and was a milestone they were celebrating in style. They got straight down to business and opened their set with upbeat track “Play” from their second album, Knowing What You Know Now, which was released back in January to critical acclaim. The band is made up of two groups of siblings; Becca, Josh and Sam MacIntyre (vocals, drums and guitar respectively), together with brothers Jack and Will Bottomley on guitar and bass. They are a tight-knit group of friends and family and that bond is clear to see in their live performance. The energy in the room was sky-high throughout the band’s set, and I saw people of all ages getting thoroughly immersed in the show.

Marmozets (c) Katie Frost
Marmozets (c) Katie Frost

Marmozets did not disappoint with their promise of a celebration of their two albums, and played a brilliant set featuring tracks from both The Weird & Wonderful – including classics such as “Why Do You Hate Me” and “Particle” – and successful singles from Knowing What You Know Now including “Habits”. For slower song “Cry”, guitarist Sam sat down to a piano at the side of the stage which added a beautiful element of richness and emotion to the song. As well as songs from the band’s back-catalogue, they also played a song called “We Are Strange” which didn’t make it onto their most recent record. A surprising omission from their set, in my opinion, was one of their most famous hits “Born Young & Free”, but regardless the evening was a spectacular celebration of one of the best British rock bands of this day.

Following their European tour, Marmozets will be joining You Me At Six as main support on their UK tour in November. Full list of dates and links to purchase tickets available here.

Photos by Katie Frost Photography

Marmozets: official | facebook | twitter | instagram | youtube

Jamie Lenman: official | facebook | twitter | instagram | youtube

Marmozets Set-List:

  • Play
  • Why Do You Hate Me
  • Like A Battery
  • Particle
  • Lost In Translation
  • Habits
  • Insomnia
  • Weird & Wonderful
  • We Are Strange
  • Captivate You
  • Cry
  • Suffocation
  • Is It Horrible
  • New Religion
  • More Shake Hide
  • Meant To Be
  • Run With The Rhythm
  • Major System Error
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