I don’t often admit this (as my friends will verify): I was wrong. When I went to the Oxford O2 on Monday 14th May my expectations were low having seen Black Honey last year and having thought they were mediocre at best. This time however I was blown away by the band’s performance. Whether it was due to the group being tighter, the crowd being more adoring or some other mysterious factor I am unsure. One thing is certain though Black Honey have risen significantly in my opinion.
Izzy B Phillips, the frontwoman, instantly commanded the attention of the audience as soon as she set foot on stage. She dazzled us with the outrageous little red sequined number she had on which matched the disco balls hanging from every spare space on the stage. To offset her Jessica Rabbit ensemble she wore an oversized cowboy dangling round her neck which caused a few that were brave enough to sing the Walmart Yodelling kid meme at her affectionately. Though don’t be misled, Phillips may look like a young Dolly Parton but she is actually an indie punk queen.
The Brighton four-piece kicked off their penultimate tour date with the bop ‘Only Hurt the Ones I Love’ causing the packed venue to erupt with singing and moshing. Black Honey have gained quite a fan base since releasing their first singles back in 2015 and it’s easy to see why thousands of young people aspire to be as effortlessly chic as they are. The band has by no mean lost their mojo for song writing playing their recently released single ‘Bad Friends’ which came out on 4th May just before they started their UK tour in Hull.
However by far the highlight of the evening was the much loved cliché of Philips interacting with the crowd instructing everyone to crouch on the sticky beer covered venue floor before erupting into the chorus of ‘Corrine’. She even decided to grace us with her presence crowd surfing over her adoring fans a lucky few (me included!) managing to brush an elbow of the divine lady. Overall I can say I’ve never been so glad to be mistaken.