You Me At Six at Southampton Guildhall

Black Star Riders: from left, Scott Gorham, Chad Szeliga, Ricky Warwick,  Robbie Crane and Damon Johnson.  Picture by Richard Stow

Black Star Riders come under Heavy Fire on their latest tour

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After narrowly missing out on the number one album spot this week, You Me At Six’s latest tour comes with a declaration that the band has risen through the ranks of British rock.

Now out of their teens and into a third record, there’s no question the Surrey quintet are growing away from their pop-punk roots.

But those who fear the progression into a darker sound will wear away the band’s famous punchy stage presence have nothing to worry about.

Bursting into the set with the defiant Kiss and Tell, the sharp guitar riffs and snappy drums made for a blistering start.

It’s difficult to fault the fierce vocals of frontman Josh Franceschi, forever smiling and punching the air through crowd-pleasers Underdog and Save It For The Bedroom.

A soft rendition of moving ballad Fireworks pushed a mellow atmosphere on the fevered crowd before a savage version of Loverboy whipped everyone into a frenzy again.

The band put on a versatile show, moving from older and lighter tracks to heavier material from their newest album, Sinners Never Sleep.

The boys may have grown up over the years but as the sweat, angst and skill pouring from the stage shows, they can still knock you for six.

SAM BANNISTER