Review & Photo copyright © Graham Finney
Irish pop-rock band The Script haven’t visited this part of Yorkshire for a little while. Like the Irish trio, it’s no surprise to find that their extensive Yorkshire fanbase is a wee bit excited that the band have chosen to kick off their “Freedom Child” tour at the First Direct Arena.
First up is West London singer-songwriter Ella Eyre who has the unenviable task of warming up the crowd ahead of the headliners. With only thirty minutes, minimal stage space and only a few songs with which to work her magic, the singer doesn’t waste time. Bouncing about the stage, Ella shows no sign of first night nerves as energetic songs like “Came Here For Love” do their job of warming up the arena arena.
As stage time nears there is an excitement fizzing around the venue before a curtain drops to reveal the three band members stood on a B-stage situated in the middle of the arena floor. Pandemonium ensues as the arena floor becomes a sea of outstretched arms and illuminated smartphones. The band, now elevated fifteen feet in the air, open up with Superheroes and Rock The World before, bathed in green light, they continue with a confetti-drenched “Paint The Town Green”.
Following this three-song opener, the band make their way to the main stage through the crowd. Cue more pandemonium. Arriving at the main stage another blast of confetti fills the air as the band kick into It’s Not Right For You. From here on in, the Irish band deliver a polished arena pop show. Lasers pierce the air for the likes of Arms Open along with more blasts of pyro and confetti throughout the set.
Making use of every inch of the stage, frontman Danny O’Donoghue, works the crowd into a frenzy. Either side of him both guitarist Mark Sheehan and drummer Glen Power are grinning from ear to ear making it apparent that, while all around them there are probably a lot of first night nerves, these three friends from Dublin are having an absolute whale of a time.