16 May 2017 (gig)
18 May 2017
Ignore the teenage songwriter cliche of singing about drunken nights out and first heartbreaks, 18 year old Declan McKenna has the talent and maturity to take on the indie pop scene. McKenna has created an impressive dedicated fan base of indie adolescents, who took over the Cambridge Junction May 16th to see the English songwriter perform his crossover tunes.
Strolling onto the stage in Stars and Stripes leggings, a Dominoes t-shirt and clumsily applied eye liner, McKenna really was a sight to see. Kicking off the night with ‘Isombard’ caused an absolute frenzy, with fans running around in pure hysteria. It’s hard to believe Declan is only 18 yet has created this insanely committed fanbase. His age becomes noticeable in certain endearing glimpses, with teenage awkwardness shining through, but it only makes him more likeable.
The band of teens performed a crisp, well rehearsed set, whilst still having a raw edge to it, with the female lead guitarist, Isabel Torres, controlling each track alongside McKenna. Torres showed resemblance to the likes of Wolf Alice’s Ellie Rowsell and Black Honey’s Izzy Baxter, with an effortless edge and confidence in her playing.
Crowd classics included most recent track ‘The Kids Don’t Wanna Go Home’ and debut single ‘Paracetamol’, all introduced with confetti cannons and Declan throwing himself into the small but packed crowd.
After the performance there was a buzz of exhilaration as if everyone knew they’d just witness an artist who could be the next big thing. If this is what Declan can offer at just 18 years old, imagine what he will bring within the next few years.