As a long-time fan of From the Jam, I was thrilled to attend their latest gig as a photographer and reviewer at Manchester’s O2 Ritz. The band, consisting of Russell Hastings and Bruce Foxton’s stand-in due to illness, did not disappoint at all. The gig was a perfect mix of classic hits, high-energy performances, and an electric atmosphere. In this review, I will share my experience of the gig, from the crowd energy and atmosphere to the setlist, band members, sound, and highlights.
The Crowd Energy and Atmosphere.
The moment I walked into the O2 Ritz, I could feel the buzz of excitement in the air. The crowd was a mix of die-hard fans and younger generations who have come to appreciate From the Jam’s timeless music. As soon as the band took the stage, the crowd erupted into cheers and applause, setting the tone for the rest of the night. The energy in the room was electric, and it was clear that everyone was there to have a good time.
Throughout the gig, the crowd’s energy never waned. People were singing, dancing, and jumping along to every song. It was a fantastic sight to see so many people coming together to enjoy classic hits from one of the UK’s most iconic bands.
From the Jam’s setlist was a perfect mix of classic hits and lesser-known tracks. They opened the night with high-energy songs that immediately got the crowd moving. From there, they launched into classics such as “Going Underground,” “Town Called Malice,” and “beat surrender ” even new stuff like “Lula”which were all met with thunderous applause. One of the highlights of the setlist was “Down in the Tube Station at Midnight.” The band’s performance of this song was particularly poignant, and it was clear that many in the crowd had a deep emotional connection to it. “Pretty Green” was another standout track, with Russell Hastings delivering a powerful vocal performance that had the crowd singing along.
The Band Members.
Despite Bruce Foxton’s absence, the stand-in musician did an excellent job of filling his shoes. Russell Hastings was on top form, delivering an energetic and passionate performance throughout the night. The chemistry between the band members was evident, and it was clear that they were all having a great time on stage.
From the Jam’s Sound and Energy on Stage
From the Jam’s sound was spot on, with the band delivering flawless renditions of their classic hits. The energy on stage was infectious, and it was clear that the band members were feeding off the crowd’s energy. The mix of guitar, bass, and drums was perfectly balanced, and the sound filled the room in a way that only live music can.
Highlights from the Gig.
One of the highlights of the gig was the band’s performance of “Ghosts.” This song has always been a personal favourite of mine, and seeing it performed live was a real treat. The band’s rendition of “David Watts” was also fantastic, with the crowd singing along to every word. But perhaps the standout moment of the gig was the band’s performance of “Pretty Green.” The energy in the room was palpable as Russell Hastings delivered a powerful vocal performance that had the crowd singing along at the top of their lungs. It was a truly magical moment that I will never forget.
The Encore and Final Song.
From the Jam closed the night with a three-song encore, The crowd was in full voice, singing along to every word and cheering as the band delivered a triumphant performance. It was the perfect end to a fantastic gig, and the band left the stage to thunderous applause.
Overall, From the Jam’s gig at Manchester’s O2 Ritz was a fantastic experience that I would highly recommend to anyone who loves classic hits and high-energy performances. The crowd’s energy and enthusiasm were infectious, and the band delivered a flawless performance that had everyone on their feet. If you have the opportunity to see From the Jam live, I would highly recommend it. It’s an experience you wont forget.
Words and Photos by Phil Marsden