A capacity crowd were in attendance at the O2 Academy Newcastle to witness the return of Future Islands to the North East.
How times have changed for the Future Islands. Only a few of the almost 2,000 people in attendance would have seen the band the last time they visited the region to play the Cluny 2. However, following a string of high-profile TV appearances on the likes of Letterman in the U.S. and Later with Jools Holland in the UK, the sky seems to be the limit for Future Islands.
As the band takes the stage, the crowd is transfixed by their enigmatic frontman, Samuel Herring. He pulls out his repertoire of energetic dance moves, twisting, weaving, gyrating, and even sometimes kicking like a Russian Cossack. Herring snaps from one side to another in a heart beat. At other times, he is more reserved and can be found perched on the edge, his gaze fixed deep upon the audience, reaching out as he sings to them. He commands the stage.
Herring’s unique vocal style sees him drifting from singing to sometimes letting out an almost primordial growl. With his fiery passion and the intensity of his performance, the music seems to encapsulate him as he appears to act out the song as he is singing.
Future Islands has the crowd moving to the likes of “Balance,” “Doves,” and “Light House.” Looking around the room, it is notable that even the back row of the balcony is dancing. “Seasons” lights the blue touch paper in the room before finishing their main set with “Spirit.”
Rapturous applause flows from the crowd. The band returns to the stage to close the show with a trio of numbers from their early days in the shape of “Inch of Dust,” “Vireo’s Eye,” and the first song they ever wrote as a band, “Little Dreamer.” The audience gets the feeling they have witnessed something very special this evening. Future Islands are destined to become future festival headliners.