Only The Poets @ AKA, Banbury | Live Review

Photo by Niamh Louise Photography

After an empty year of live shows, we caught Only the Poets LIVE in Banbury!


After living in a bizarre world without live music for almost 7 months, we got a brief taste of gigs returning with Only The Poets as they played two social distanced gigs at As Known As in Banbury. 

Tommy, Jarred, Marcus and Andy performed together for the first time as a full band to two sold out social distanced crowds and despite the audience having to stay sat down withholding inhibitions unlike a normal gig it was still such a refreshing experience. Seeing the smiles on the faces of fans singing the songs back to OTP in delight and the energy onstage were so uplifting as you could see how clearly the band had missed performing.

Masked meet and greets at the merch stand along with social distanced photos were extremely strange to watch but it was a great idea to allow the band to have that time with the fans as they normally would. What you would expect would be an awkward situation for all involved actually was a topic of a good laugh and the meet and greet experience was as fun as ever and definitely something both the boys and fans will never forget (in a peculiar way). 

Having to wear masks when moving around the venue was definitely strange, especially seeing the band walk to and from the stage making their entrance in masks, removing them once on stage. The audiences were sat at tables in groups from 2-6 with family and safe bubbles, as they are now known. As a whole it did feel really safe and secure and it’d be wonderful if more gigs would be allowed to operate like that as it would bring back so many people’s jobs and spirit of what live music is all about.

Only The Poets were just as great and had the same amount of energy as they would in a venue like Scala where the audience would be on their feet, arms round eachother. To have live music back even for a short time and in a very stripped back format was so special and we have lots of hope that live music and events will return in full force when the time comes, until then, let’s hope lots of gigs such as this one done by Only The Poets can keep us smiling and remembering just what live music does for the soul.

Words and Photos by Niamh Louise Photography

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