LIVE REVIEW: Ward Thomas @ O2 Institute – Birmingham

Last night (April 1st) British Country crossover duo Ward Thomas kicked off the second leg of their sell out Restless Minds tour in Birmingham.

The gig was held at a packed out O2 Institute with support act The Wandering Hearts opening the evening with a stunning set filled with hits off their 2018 debut LP Wild Silence.

The crowd instantly fell in love with the trio’s luscious vocal harmonies and were singing along from the first moment.

Highlights from the fast rising UK Americanna trio included the stunning Til The Day I Die, the rockin’ Rattle and brand new as yet unreleased track Your Love Hurts.

It’s obvious that The Wandering Hearts are well on their way to becoming household names and it won’t be long until they return to the Institute as headliners.

After a short interval it was time for the main event. Catherine and Lizzy arrived on stage to deafening cheers and kicked off with hit single Lie Like Me before launching into fan favourite Guilty Flowers which ensured the capacity Birmingham audience were singing and clapping along right from the off.

Monday night gigs are notorious for being a little lethargic but Ward Thomas had the place rocking right from the start. Fan favourites such as Same Love and It’s Not Just Me got the whole crowd in full voice while the softer moments in the set for poignant guitar led ballads such as No Fooling Me and Deepest You allowed the set list room to breathe, while also showcasing the twins’ sensational soaring harmonies.

The middle of the night took fans back to 2014 for a medley of their three breakout singles: Good and The Right, Town Called Ugley and Push For The Stride.

This was a major highlight of the night and one that shone light on the girls’ growth and gave them room to showcase their fun personalities.

The standout moment of the evening came when Ward Thomas performed I Believe In You and split the audience in two for an entertaining sing-off competition.

The entire audiorium was literally bouncing as they clapped and sang along in full voice. This was the third Restless Minds tour date for me personally and I can honestly say this was the best reception I have ever seen to this song.

The Birmingham audience were incredibly loud which made it an amazing moment and the girls were having the time of their life on stage.

As the night came to a close, Ward Thomas closed out with new LP Restless Minds favourite Never Know which once again had everyone clapping along. They left the stage to huge cheers and returned for a two song encore after the crowd whistled, cheered, clapped and stamped their feet for them to return.

Having been to 10 Ward Thomas gigs in the past three years this was the loudest encore call I have ever heard. Something which Lizzy picked up on as she returned and stated that they’d never had foot stamping before, this prompted another round of feet on floor.

They then performed a note perfect rendition of the heartfelt This Too Will Pass before ending the night with the classic Carry You Home, which the 2,000 strong crowd sang every word to almost drowning out the Hampshire twins in the process.

Last night was a truly special evening of live music and somehow Ward Thomas manage get better with every single live show. Their on stage presence has grown so much and it’s a delight to see them having so much fun performing.

They dance to Rather Be Breathing with such charm, keep it intimate by chatting to the audience and kept it real when Catherine swore during a speech about how we need to stop having a “fu**ing filter” before they sang the installational No Filter. This moment prompted laughter as the sisters admitted their mother was in the audience and would not approve of the language to which Catherine quipped “sorry mummy”.

Having been to so many Ward Thomas shows it’s been an honour to see their incredible growth tour on tour and show on show.

This Restless Minds tour is arena ready and last night was the best Ward Thomas live gig I have ever been to; stunning harmonies, note perfect vocals, easy charm, dancing, sing-a-longs, and Country-Pop hits, what more could you want from a concert

5/5

We’re you at the Ward Thomas gig last night in Birmingham? Let us know in the comments below. 

Laura Klonowski

Qualified music journalist! Writing single/album/live reviews, feature articles, interviews, and news pieces. Portfolio: lauraklonowski.com Twitter: @cherylssoldier1 Instagram: @musicandtournews Email: [email protected]

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