By Josie Howie
Four-piece alt-rock ensemble Mallory Knox have just embarked on their farewell tour after 10 years together. Hailing from Cambridge, the band was formed in 2009, with their debut album, Signals, being released in 2013. The tour accompanies their fourth and final album which is self-titled. The band have recently announced their separation, just a few weeks before kicking off this headline tour, so it’s safe to say that this was not going to be one to miss!
I’d been lucky enough to catch Mallory Knox’s set at 2000 Trees Festival in 2016, but a headline show of theirs was a first for me. The Cardiff date was first on the line up, hosted at the notorious and well adored Clwb Ifor Bach. I was more than pleased to see that they were supported at this date by local acts alone, with Welsh bands WYNT and Just Drive opening up the show. Big up the South Wales music scene! WYNT brought an indie/rock sound to start off the night, whilst Just Drive warmed up the crowd with their nostalgic Killers-esque tunes. A superb way to ready the crowd for what was to come.
Originally fronted by Mikey Chapman, the band’s lead vocals have been delivered since early 2018 by bassist Sam Douglas. It’s a tough task to take on when fans are used to distinctive vocals, but Sam executed all of the lyrics seamlessly; you’d hardly notice that it was a different voice from the albums.
They opened with some of their best-known songs, including Ghost In The Mirror and Shout At The Moon, which loyal fans will know well from their first and second albums. It was clear this was going to be an emotional show for everyone involved. New material from their latest album was showcased too, and I have to admit it all sounded just as good as on the record. Their recent single Heartbreak Lover particularly stood out, combining a taste of their old sound with an updated style. It’s a true shame that we won’t be getting anymore of the same.
The show was closed with a couple of classics, Better off Without You and Lighthouse, accompanied by an emotional speech from Sam, thanking fans for their loyalty over the years. The crowd were certainly not disappointed, with most of the crowd singing along for the last time. All in all, a wonderfully nostalgic and well-executed performance as Mallory wrap up the band and go their separate ways. They’ll be missed!