Luke Hemmings Goes Solo at Sold-Out Shepherd’s Bush Empire Show

Luke Hemmings embarks on his first worldwide solo tour to celebrate the release of his latest EP release ‘boy’, headlining London’s O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire on 16th May 2024.

Hemmings is no stranger to performing for large crowds of devoted fans, with his time in Australian pop band 5 Seconds of Summer seeing him perform at iconic venues including London’s O2 Arena and New York’s Madison Square Garden.

Therefore, London’s O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire, which boasts a capacity of just 2000, seems like an intimate choice for Hemmings’ first of two London shows on the ‘Nostalgia For A Time That Never Existed’ tour.

Not even the London drizzle could stop fans from queuing for the best spot in the venue, with many even camping overnight to secure their spot at the barrier.

Support NewDad instantly enchanted the crowd, with the indie-rocking Galway four-piece setting themselves apart from the typical shoegaze band.

With names including The 1975 and Two Door Cinema Club gracing the pre-show playlist, fans already radiated high energy levels by the time Hemmings was warmly welcomed on stage.

Opening with ‘A Beautiful Dream’, a track on his debut album, Hemmings was clearly foreshadowing what the night was going to be for those in attendance.

Although the show acted as a celebration for Hemmings’ latest EP release ‘boy’, which was released on 26 April 2024, these tracks were blended seamlessly with several songs on ‘When Facing The Things We Turn Away From’, Hemmings’ first album, released in 2021.

There’s no denying that much of Hemmings’ discography is sombre, raw, and captivating, with the crowd truly embracing every emotion.

Although ‘Benny’ was written about Hemmings’ guilt of being away from family and living on the periphery of their world, its surprisingly uptempo drumbeat was one that saw arms being thrown in the air.

This was proceeded by a run of overwhelming melancholy, including ‘Mum’ and ‘Bloodline’. However, feelings of unity filled the Empire, with the crowd passionately singing each line as if it were written about their experiences directly.

Hemmings took a moment to reflect, reminiscing back to when 5 Seconds of Summer played the venue 10 years prior, at the very start of their career. “London is where I learnt how to write songs, where I learnt how to perform on stage,” the Australian reminisced.

Although Hemmings’ initial success can be attributed to the band, it was clear that the crowd were solely there to support him and his individual talent, which although does shine with his band members by his side, truly radiates at his solo shows.

Choosing to cover ‘Friday I’m In Love’ by The Cure was a decision that the crowd certainly adored, with Hemmings swaying from side to side with those on the barrier as they screamed “Friday, I’m In Love” whilst pointing at the musician.

The night ended with Hemmings’ first solo single release, ‘Starting Line’, with confetti showering the venue just before the final bridge. The passion felt within these parting moments was one that truly captured the relationship that is present between Hemmings and his fans, with many individuals in the crowd engulfing each other in a hug as he exited the stage.

Luke Hemmings performed at O2 Shepherds Bush Empire on 16th May 2024.

Featured Image Credit: Hannah Adams

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