JLS @ The Bic
A high energy night made up of strobe lights, four men nearing their 40s, and songs I had on my childhood MP3 Player, which all combined to leave me genuinely ecstatic by the end of the set.
Walking into the BIC to find my seats for the JLS Hits Tour, I was slightly surprised to find the stage already occupied by an extremely energetic woman in a metallic gold leotard, whose name I soon learnt was Shab. If I’m being honest, Shab wasn’t the vibe I was expecting for a JLS opener, but her songs were pretty enjoyable dance pop, with ‘Voodoo’ as a strong ending number.
It was when I caught a mention of the name Tinchy Stryder that my excitement really started to catapult to new heights. As I hadn’t researched JLS’s opening acts, I wasn’t sure I’d heard right and barely dared to get my hopes up that the 10s icon that is Tinchy was about to make an appearance.
Yet shortly, a DJ appeared on stage and started a chant of “When I say Tinchy, you say Stryder!” and, I won’t lie, I got FAR too into this, absolutely belting “STRYDER” at the top of my lungs until Tinchy himself made an appearance.
Personally, I found Tinchy’s set thrilling, especially the performances of some of his biggest hits like ‘Number 1’ and ‘Spaceship’. What I will say though is that this is probably not the venue or crowd most suited to Tinchy’s music, a lot of the mums sat around me were not impressed with my jumping up and down whilst they remained seated, but that’s on them for not passing the vibe check.
Nevertheless, there was plenty of passion, plenty of energy, and plenty of footwork from both me and Tinchy, leaving me thoroughly hyped for the rest of the show.
Then, it was time for the main event. Smoke filled the stage and dramatic close-ups of my first ever celebrity crushes filled the screens, as the audience excitedly got to their feet.
Oritsé, Marvin, Aston and JB appeared in lights and filled the next ninety minutes with nostalgic tunes, backflips, banter, and lots of (somewhat questionable) hip thrusting. I loved every minute, the entire audience was grinning, dancing and singing the whole time.
The guys sang all of their classics, opening with ‘Eyes Wide Shut’, and moving on to energetic choreographed numbers for ‘The Club is Alive’ and ‘Beat Again’, and ending with the belter that is ‘Everybody in Love’ which left everybody in their feels.
The show perfectly blended the expected with the unexpected. We were all waiting for Aston’s backflip, and it did not disappoint; every woman of every age lost her mind (it’s obvious why Aston is the crowd favourite but, in my opinion, he’s a bit pick-me and true fans know Marvin is the real number one). At one point, they brought two girls up on stage to serenade which is a situation that, as you can hear me saying in the back of one of my friend’s videos, I would find so embarrassing that I would simply perish on the spot. Another fun surprise of the show was the DJ element in the middle when Aston and Marvin went head-to-head mixing some 00s club classics from the likes of Dizzee Rascal, Nicki Minaj, TLC and the Backstreet Boys.
It’s kind of crazy to think these guys have been doing their thing since before I knew how to read but, you know what, they’ve still got it. I left the concert with the renewed obsession with JLS that my ten-year-old self had, and I’d call that a success.
Overall, the vibe was high, it was fun and silly and nostalgic, and JLS kept the BIC crowd alive with the sound of their music.
Written by Romy Pratt : )