The first time I saw Lights was at this venue. It was my first year of uni and I spent 12 hours straight in the darkroom so I could hand in early and get the bus to Bristol.
Now I've graduated. So, of course, I had to take photos again. In true form, I arrived far too early, with @thisisjoyjoyjoy and her camping chair to wait outside a boat for 12 hours. Rain stopped as more fans arrived. Lights was kind enough to come and meet us all in the afternoon.
I remembered running down the Thekla steps and across the floor like it was yesterday. This was my first time being front centre for Lights. The crowd waited impatiently for opener Lizzy Farrall. She's great - give her a listen! Also shoutout to her drummer for playing on with a nosebleed.
Now we waited. Fans screamed, chanted, pounded the floor and stage. Finally, Lights strolled on to open with New Fears.
For the show's acoustic request, she played Saviour - which is my favourite song from The Listening, not to mention one of my favourite Lights songs and what I requested in Buffalo! I was thrilled.
So, I left singing Giants with what little was left of my voice, just as I left singing Don't Go Home Without Me four years prior. But something was different and it wasn't just that I was a graduate over a nervous first year. With these songs as a constant presence and the release of Skin & Earth in particular, I grew to feel no fear, because they helped me realise hope was buried inside of me the whole time. I knew now they almost had me, but they never got me. Like you hear my Nottingham accent screaming from several people away at 3:10 in this video - I'd never let you sink your teeth in. I know I'll grow more with Lights' music for years to come.
Bonus fangirl moment:
This was my third and final show of the tour. Why not read my story about how it began... in Buffalo?
If you repost my photos, give clear credit by tagging me (@mariagloriaharvey on Instagram and Tumblr), not just writing my name. If you want to be really nice, or if you just really enjoyed my photos, please consider buying me a coffee for £3 on Ko-Fi! It won't actually go towards coffee, but to a drawing tablet so I can illustrate my novel. Thank you!