By: Lucy Pearce
5 February, 2019, 20:00
Huddled away in the corner of a freezing Southampton street, Heartbreakers Bar bustles as gig-goers begin to arrive for tonight’s headliner – Her’s. Formed in Liverpool, the duo are knee-deep into the UK leg of their extensive tour, with many shows selling out – this one included.
Upstairs and out of the cold, local artist Paddy McCaddy dons the intimate stage, serenading the slowly filling crowd. His growling vocals compliments the woody notes of his acoustic guitar, and despite his band dropping out at the very last minute, McCaddy pulls off a respectable solo set.
The room now swilling with chatty revellers and the smoke machine blaring, headliners Her’s are all smiles as they hop to the stage. A velvet covered table holds the loyal drum machine while a Pierce Brosnan cardboard cut-out stands proudly where a drummer would be, giving the boys an incredibly well-dressed third member. Opening with ‘Marcel’, guitarist and vocalist Stephen Fitzpatrick bobs to the dreamy melody as bassist and backing singer Audun Laading dances confidently across the stage. The contrast in their playing styles – one with eyes shut and a gentle sway, one non-stop grinning and boogying – makes Her’s all the better to watch.
Stephens vocal range is instantly impressive, with his ability to hit solid high notes before plunging into his smooth, rumbling tones proven otherwise in ‘She Needs Him’ and ‘Low Beam’. Audun converts his trousers into shorts as ‘Cool With You’ vamps up the pace with sharp, energetic drums, before ‘Love On The Line’ tells a tale of phone sex. Her’s’ personal lyrics are relatable and humorous, matching perfectly with their stage demeanour. Interspersed with chants about vegan garlic bread and covers of Robbie William’s ‘She’s The One’, Her’s storm through a faultless set of all their most popular tunes. ‘What Once Was’ gets the crowd shouting along, before the boys sit everyone down for a calming riff-sesh.
Now relaxed and stress-free, Her’s round off the show with a crowd-demanded encore of the bright and jolly ‘Under Wraps’ and urgent ‘Speedy Racer’, which we all can’t help but sing and bounce to. Pulling off a genuinely flawless live show is hard for the best of bands, but Her’s made it look effortless. So, if you’re up for a beer, a laugh and a proper bop, grab yourself a ticket while they last.