Review: Caity Baser – O2 Guildhall, Southampton

Review: Caity Baser – O2 Guildhall, Southampton

Pictures: Callum Linklater. Words: Vicky Greer.


“This is a big one,” says Caity Baser on stage at the O2 Guildhall at the homecoming show of her Still Learning tour.

It’s a full circle moment as she tells us about how she came to this very venue as a 15-year-old (her first concert unaccompanied by her parents) to see The Wombats play on the stage she’s gracing tonight.

The crowd are ecstatic, the room a sea of pinks and reds, fun hairstyles and vibrant energy. Passing by the Guildhall at 2 in the afternoon, I saw dozens of fans already waiting outside the venue. There was a palpable sense of joy even before Baser took to the stage, with a whole-room singalong to Shania Twain’s ‘Man! I Feel Like A Woman’ matching the energy perfectly.

The night got off to a good start with support act Bellah Mae bringing what she called her ‘sad girl era’ to the room. She already had fans singing and dancing along to every word, and the rest of us were quickly converted by her cover of Noah Kahan’s ‘Stick Season.’ Her recent single ‘2053’ is the highlight of her set, and she finished her time on the stage with fan-favourite ‘Boyfriend of the Year.’

When it’s time for the main event, Caity Baser tears onto the stage, ripping through a giant L Plate in a tutu that looks like it could be made of marshmallows. The first half of the show is banger after banger, starting with ‘I’m a Problem’ before launching into hits ‘Kiss You,’ ‘The Plot’ and ‘X&Y’, encouraging us all to live our best life and most of all, to have fun. Her band, Louis and Ollie, look like they’re having just as much fun as she is, injecting each song with extra energy and some downright impressive guitar solos.

Baser’s energy is infectious, and it’s clear how much this triumphant homecoming date means to her. She’s chatting between songs, engaging the audience in a Freddy Mercury-inspired call and response all night long and frequently reminding the crowd how much she loves them. Her power of the crowd is enchanting, a result of how happy she is to be performing for everyone and the fact that every single song is memorable – no mean feat for an artist who has just released her debut album.

There’s a high production value and a sense of theatricality in the set, but the most powerful moments come from Caity Baser’s pure authenticity. Nothing feels impersonal or over-choreographed. What was supposed to be a heartfelt performance of ‘Everything Everywhere All At Once,’ is delayed by a fit of the giggles before ending with Baser destroying a heart-shaped piñata with a bat. Between songs, she lets her mind wander and takes us all along for the ride. Like hanging out with a good friend, we get to see who she truly is.

As she draws the evening to a close with ‘I’ll Be Here For You,’ a large number of people in the audience pull paper signs out of their bags, declaring ‘We’ll Be Here For You,’ a physical manifestation of the love felt in the room that night. Everyone leaves the venue feeling lighter than when they walked in, having shared the musical equivalent of a warm hug together. 


  • In Common is not for profit. We rely on donations from readers to keep the site running. Could you help to support us for as little as 25p a week? Please help us to carry on offering independent grass roots media. Visit: