Boxed In Mesmerise At Exeter Phoenix

by Rasagnya Gurung

On the 11th of February, I lost my Exeter Phoenix virginity to Boxed In and I couldn’t be happier. My night began with nervousness and uncertainty about what the night had in store and ended with a sense of contentment. After aimlessly wandering the streets looking for my destination and stopping to ask for directions, I stumbled in just in time for The Loft Club.

Exeter’s very own The Loft Club, kicked off the night with their renowned song Heart’s Desire and continued to play songs from their EP Heart’s Desire. Shortly after, Little Cub took to the stage and blessed the audience with their best tracks, including Loveless and Man Nature. As I waited for Boxed In, I looked around me, I realised that I was surrounded by people who looked like they had walked out of the latest zine featured on Dazed, and suddenly my excitement for Boxed In grew manifold.

Boxed In’s performance was slightly delayed by technical difficulties, but it was worth it. Bathed in red lights, they stepped on stage and played their first song (Jist) for the evening. Frontman Oli Bayston welcomed the small crowd of about 50 people and remarked about how glad he was to perform in Exeter for the first time; this was welcomed by loud cheers and applause. Boxed In switched from an upbeat vibe to a slower one as they went on to play London Lights. The dark and hypnotising beat of the song matched the intimate atmosphere of the venue.

Most of Boxed In’s songs have the perfect infusion of melancholy, passion and joy and I was overjoyed to see that being delivered through their live performance as well. I was a bit skeptical about their ability to convey and induce the same pensiveness live, but Boxed In didn’t disappoint. The transitions between each song were excellent and Boxed In maintained the same level of enthusiasm throughout the night and the audience matched it. One of the reasons I especially enjoyed the night was the fact that every time I close my eyes, I felt one with the aura created by Bayston’s trippy vocals (backed up by supporting band members, of course).

Would I recommend seeing Boxed In live? Definitely. If you’re a fan of their genre of music (electronic/alternative pop) and want to ditch the conventional gig vibe for a true experience instead, then Boxed In live is exactly what you need in life.