In years to come, Sheffield’s The Sherlocks will look back on their sell-out headline hometown show at the O2 Academy as the night they truly made it.
The crowd was ready long before the band of brothers marched onto stage for the final show of their Live for the Moment headline tour, mass singalong’s to Oasis and Arctic Monkeys’ tunes ahead of The Sherlocks’ appearance simply serving to build the atmosphere.
And when the band launched into their opening song, crowd-pleasing single Last Night, the whole 2,200 capacity crowd was bouncing and singing along.
Frontman Kiaran Crook admitted performing to a sell-out O2 was something the band had dreamed of for a long time, a venue they walked past time and time again and where they first started going to gigs - particularly so for drummer and Sheffield Hallam University law graduate Brandon, Kiaran’s brother.
A gig they had yearned for, from starting out in near-empty pub backrooms, through Rockin’ Chair, Plug, Plug’s main room, and the O2’s smaller room - as Kiaran reeled off a list of the Sheffield venues have played as their stock as risen - as well as becoming the first unsigned band to sell out The Leadmill since Arctic Monkeys more than a decade ago.
And Arctic Monkeys comparisons are inevitable for a Sheffield band built on good old-fashioned Yorkshire rock’n’roll with lyrics people can relate to, particularly about love, life and nights out.
In truth, The Sherlocks’ success is built on relentless gigging. With more than a thousand gigs under their belt, they have honed their craft and this a vastly different band to the one who used to perform to one man and his dog as little as three years ago. Bassist and youngest member Andy Davidson is no longer the little boy lost stood in the corner, but an integral part of the show as he marched on stage first in an inflatable crown, before a sterling performance full of energy and movement, matched by his brother Josh on guitar on the opposite side of the stage.
Tracks from the band’s smash-hit debut album Live for the Moment - which reached number six on its release last month - came thick and fast. However, the show was short at just a dozen songs over an hour and tailed off very slightly in the middle as Kiaran slowed it down, urging fans to get their lighters and phones out for Candlelight - although the shout out to Sheffield Children’s Hospital, where the show was being live-streamed, and to remember there’s always someone worse off than you was a nice touch.
The Sherlocks saved the best for last, finishing with the album’s title track, followed by mass singalong to Chasing Shadows, “a song we will probably always finish with, even in 10 years; time” and which the crowd continued to sing as they filed out into the Sheffield night, a true sign of a band at the top.
The hard work starts now if the band want to stay there.