Heading into Manchester’s O2 Victoria Warehouse, to see indie art rockers Franz Ferdinand, Billy Seagrave, joins the sell out crowd to roll through the years.

London-based band, The Great Leslie are assuredly carving a name for themselves in the alt-rock scene with their slick song writing and amazing musicality creating instant classics that stick with you. The Great Leslie is a metaphysical, Bond-like, Spartacus-esque being, originally in the guise of Tony Curtis in his crowning role, and now personified by four ex-cons, all of whom were sent down for indecent assault after passing wind in a cinema. They’ve come together in search of their fortune and have each attested that in another life they would be pirates if it weren’t for their crippling fear of water.

Made up of Lead Singer Ollie Trevers, drummer Ryan Lavender, bassist Alfie Pawsey, and lead guitarist Freddie Miles, the band formed at the beginning of the pandemic with the dream team coming together in January 2022. Opening with their latest single, “Feel Alive”, instantly grab the attention of the growing crowd, exuberant vocals, glorious bass lines and guitar hooks and relatable lyrics are just some of the characteristics you can expect from the music by The Great Leslie, “Out of My Hands” is a beautifully crafted song which had me gripped within seconds. Its catchy guitar hook, bold and bright vocals and captivating lyrics are a joyous combination. The Great Leslie have been performing live since early 2019, and this song is crying out to be performed to a huge crowd, all singing and dancing along! Its Alternative indie/rock and pop, I felt a lot of pop vibes pushing through, “Liquid spells”, has a great Artic monkeys vibe, but vocally, Sam Fender, now there’s a combination to have you up on your feet. Front man Ollie Trever’s is a driving force which comes to the fore on final track, “All good things”, a real raucous mash up. It is always wise to get down and support the support acts, and tonight The Great Leslie band prove that.


1/ Feel Alive

2/ Anna

3/ That’s Alright

4/ Liquid Spells

5/ You Lost Yourself

6/ Out of My Hands,

7/ Creflyn

8/ All Good Things.



Main support for tonight is the Pocket Dynamo’s Los Bitchos, The four-piece – founded and based in London, but drawn from Australia, Uruguay, Sweden and the UK – have become one of 2022’s breakthrough indie success stories, thanks to their unique, tequila-infused blend of everything from Psychedelic surf disco, or as the band describe it as instrumental psychedelic sunshine. as well as their riotous live shows. It’s an energy that was smartly captured on their aptly titled debut album, ‘Let the Festivities Begin!’ A lot of people have got here to see the band, most having had great reports from their headline slot at Manchester’s New Century Hall, a few weeks ago.

The four-piece waste no time entering the stage, and immediately launch into, “FFS”, and “Change of Heart” to the Mediterranean feel of “Pista”, (Fresh Start), there’s even the time to throw in “Los Christmos”, which is a little early, but perfectly fits the bill. “Good to go”, that was produced by tonight’s host and lead singer of Franz Ferdinand, Alex Kaparanos, really does hit the spot, with the crowd. The music is infectious, a real uplifting frenzy that the band whips up, though, is a superb musicianship, especially on the scintillating ‘The Link Is About to Die’, which sees de facto frontwoman Serra Petale flit effortlessly between crunching riffs and extended bongo solos. Closing the set with a thunderous take on The Champs’ “Tequila”, Los Bitchos have set the tone for tonight’s headline act Franz Ferdinand.


1/ FFS

2/ The Link Is About to Die

3/ Good to Go!

4/ Lindsay Goes to Mykonos

5/ Los Chrismos

6/ Trapdoor

7/ Pista (Fresh Start)

8/ Tequila.



Franz Ferdinand made their way onto the stage playing the opening notes of “The Dark of the Matinee” behind a curtain screen and flashing lights which offered some stunning visual effects. And from the moment that curtain dropped, Kapranos and the band did exactly what they set out to do – deliver hit after hit.

Kapranos has always been a fabulous frontman and is a Master of Working the stage and the crowd. As the band glide through the hits Kaparanos seems so assured, fully in charge with plenty of cheeky banter being delivered to a rather enthusiastic crowd. at one point standing on top of an amp with his own name on it, guitar held aloft. The band Bob Hardy, Bass Guitar, Dino Bardot, Guitar, Julian Corrie, Keyboards, and Audrey Tait, drums. are superb: locked-in, intuitive, fun, fierce. Always Ascending sees them dive into pure Talking Heads domain: zippy guitars bounce as vocal harmonies layer up and the pace accelerates, teetering close to frantic chaos but never descending into it.

As the band came towards the end of “Outsiders”, there was a blackout, which gave new drummer Audrey Tait who joined them in 2021, just enough time to move away from her drum kit and take up centre stage with some snares. As the lights came back on, all five members of the band held drumsticks in their hands and let the track go out with an impressive drum off to finish.

Kapranos returning on stage asking if you would like another song is received with riotous appreciation. “Billy goodbye”, and “Darts of pleasure”, bring us to the last track of the night. “This fire”, is a classic, as has been most of tonights set, definitely greatest hits feel, the closing lines are “Burn this city”, is ringing in the ears of a crowd. If you can get to one of their upcoming gigs.




1/ The Dark of the Matinee

2/ No You Girls

3/ Curious

4/ Walk Away

5/ Evil Eye

6/ Do You Want To

7/ Stand on the Horizon

8/ Always Ascending

9/ Lucid Dreams

10/ The Fallen

11/ Love Illumination

12/ Michael

13/ Take Me Out

14/ Ulysses (The Disco Bloodbath Effect)

15/ Outsiders


16/ Billy Goodbye

17/ Darts of Pleasure

18/ The Fire